Bruister gets win No. 500 as Otto deals No-Hitter

Tyler McDonough, Sr. Sports Reporter

Head Coach Richie Bruister picked up his 500th win in game 2 versus MSU-Texas | Joseph Miller

By Tyler McDonough | Senior Sports Reporter

Commerce– Head Softball Coach Richie Bruister picked up his 500th career win in game 2 vs. Midwestern State University as the No. 9 Texas A&M University-Commerce Lions swept the Mustangs at the John Cain Family Softball Complex over the weekend.

Bruister accumulated 163 wins at Henderson State from 2004-08, 183 wins at Texas Woman’s from 2009-2013, and now has 154 victories at A&M-Commerce (2015-present).

Game One:

In game one the Lions scored 11 of their 12 runs unearned. The Mustangs had costly errors that hurt, and the Lions took advantage, winning 12-0 in five innings. A&M-Commerce got things going early in the first inning as Kinsie Hebler drove in a two-run single, followed up by a two-run double from Chelsea Slider to take an early 4-0 lead. The Lions tacked on 8 more runs in the third inning, a few errors from the Mustangs and a Bri Sims grand slam (2nd of her career) broke the game wide open. Katie Dean pitched a gem, going the distance, only allowing five hits with a shutout.

Game Two:

In game two, history was made as the Lions picked up a 4-0 victory to give Bruister win no. 500 of his career. Both teams were limited offensively as Lion pitcher Emily Otto pitched her second career no-hitter, dealing 7 strikeouts, and improving to 7-0 on the season. Midwestern State pitcher Misty Muniz pitched a solid game as well only allowing one run. Tucker Caraway picked up the loss for the Mustangs, as she allowed eight runs in the 5th inning. Lion right fielder Kayla Kilcrease scored the games first run on a wild pitch after leading off with a double in the first inning. In the 5th inning, Ta’Lyn Moody reached on a bunt single with the bases loaded. A throwing error scored all three runs to put the Lions up 4-0. A few batters later, with the bases loaded again, Jodie Hill walked in a run, and then Vanessa Muro hit a walk-off grand slam to give the Lions a 9-0 run rule victory.

Head Coach Richie Bruister after win no. 500

“You couldn’t script any better than it happened today. I want to thank the good Lord for the opportunities He’s given me. I want to thank my family too. I have a wonderful wife and dad. Everybody has supported me all these years. It is tough being a family member of a coach with all the time we have to spend working to be successful. I couldn’t be more thankful for my family. I want to thank my staff members that have been great through all my years. I’ve been fortunate for them to stand by me, now with Coach May and Coach McNutt. I want to thank all the support staff and the administration at the universities I have coached for. And most of all, to the players. They have overcome bad coaching. I have out-recruited my coaching ability. I am very proud of what they do every single day. My hats are off to the players and my coaching staffs for all they have done throughout the years.”

Game Three:

In game three, Kilcrease set the tone for the Lions as she ripped a double into right center to get things started. Kilcrease took third on a sac bunt and scored later on by a wild pitch. Kinsie Hebler knocked in an RBI in the fifth and after a few walks Vanessa Muro drilled a walk-off grand slam to mercy rule the Mustangs 9-0. Emily Otto had a fantastic performance as she threw her second no-hitter of her collegiate career.