Josie Bower and her Baylor teammates made sure Glenn Moore didn’t have to wait long to nail down his 900th career win.
With Bower blasting her second career homer and collecting six RBIs, Baylor rolled to a 7-4 win over Prairie View A&M and a 10-2 run-rule win over Grand Canyon on Friday to give Moore his milestone win on the opening day of the Getterman Classic.
Moore is now 900-416 in 24 seasons as a college softball coach at Baylor, LSU and William Carey. His 761 wins in 20 seasons at Baylor is a school record for all sports.
“I’m a blessed man to be able to do what I want to do and being surrounded by so many people that make that happen,” Moore said. “First the players and certainly the other coaches on my staff are the reasons I’ve got 900. I’ve won a lot of games, talking about Coach (Britni) Newman for me (pitching) at LSU and then Coach (Mark) Lumley, they’re loyal and they’re hard workers.”
After the game, former Baylor All-Americans like Whitney Canion, Chelsi Lake and Jessie Scroggins thanked Moore in a video tribute. The current Baylor players were glad they played a part in Moore’s 900th win.
“It felt magical, it really did,” said freshman pitcher Aliyah Pritchett. “It was amazing being able to win that for him. It really built us even more as a team and a family, and it was awesome.”
Bower played a big part in Moore’s milestone win as she lifted a three-run pinch-hit homer over the left-field fence off Yessie Morrison to highlight a seven-run fourth inning in the nightcap against Grand Canyon.
In Friday’s first game against Prairie View A&M, Bower went 2-for-3 with a double and a triple and three RBIs.
“A lot of us wanted to bring it home tonight, the 900th win, and that’s what we were playing for,” Bower said. “It’s really special to be part of a big legacy like that. Obviously he’s built a really great program here at Baylor, so to be a little splash in that legacy means a lot.”
After struggling to find her pitching groove in last weekend’s season-opening NFCA Leadoff Classic in Clearwater, Fla., Pritchett (2-0) went the distance against Grand Canyon as she allowed six hits, a walk and two earned runs in five innings.
Pritchett got plenty of offensive support as the Lady Bears (5-2) amassed 10 hits, including three by Kyla Walker and two by Maddison Kettler.
“I thought she got stronger as the game went on,” Moore said. “She struggled a little bit early on, but we didn’t play great defense today. Those are areas of improvement where we need to get better. I’m still moving some people around.”
However, Baylor leftfielder Ana Watson delivered a game-turning defensive play in the fourth inning when she threw out Kaileigh Holland at home when she tried to score from second on Kristin Fifield’s single for the first out of the inning.
Pritchett retired the next two batters to get out of the inning unscathed before the Lady Bears broke it open with their seven-run fourth.
Baylor second baseman Nicky Dawson made a spectacular dive to snag Olivia Zufelt’s hard-hit grounder for the second out of the fifth inning. With Walker drilling a run-scoring double, Baylor scored twice in the bottom of the fifth to complete the run-rule win.
In the opener, Lou Gilbert collected three hits as the Lady Bears overcame Prairie View. Baylor opened up a 5-1 lead with a five-run second inning as Bower drilled a two-run triple and Taylor Ellis hit a two-run double off Taylor Drury.
Prairie View responded with a pair of fourth-inning runs as Cameron Lavergne hit a two-run double. After the Panthers cut Baylor’s lead to 5-4 with Alyssa Garcia’s run-scoring single, the Lady Bears got some breathing room when Gilbert hit a run-scoring triple and Bower hit a run-scoring double.
Sidney Holman-Mansell (1-1) picked up the win for Baylor as she allowed four hits, three walks and four earned runs in five innings. Gia Rodoni shut out the Panthers in the final two innings to seal the win.
On Saturday, Baylor will face Western Illinois at 12:30 p.m. before the tournament enters the semifinals later in the afternoon. The consolation and championship games will be held Sunday morning.