Texas State notebook: Bobcats pick up more help for the offensive line

One of the football team’s biggest issues that Everett Withers has faced has been revamping its offensive line. Several linemen, including some starters, left the program for various reasons before Withers’ first season in 2016.

Fielding a depleted line, Texas State saw quarterback Tyler Jones sacked 37 times in 11 games — he was sacked only 18 times in 12 games in 2015 — and he rushed for minus-8 yards after gaining nearly 1,400 over his first three years.

This has not gone unnoticed by the coaching staff.

The Bobcats signed five offensive linemen in 2017 and have two commitments for 2018 in Waxahachie tackle Jack York, who pledged last month, and San Marcos guard Alex Costilla, who pledged this week.

“It’s a family atmosphere and they genuinely care about you as a person, not just a player,” Costilla said. “They have meetings that teach you how be a man before a football player, and I liked that a lot.”

The 6-4, 305-pound guard is a three-star prospect on 247Sports’ composite ratings. He’s Texas State’s third 2018 pledge, joining York and Wylie quarterback Stacy Conner.

Women’s basketball falls: The women’s basketball team’s season ended Thursday with a 66-64 loss to Louisiana-Lafayette in the Sun Belt tournament quarterfinals. The Bobcats led by nine at halftime. Toshua Leavitt hit seven three-pointers in the first half, tying a school record, but went scoreless in the second half.

Kaitlin Walla’s three-pointer tied the game 64-64 with four seconds left, but the Cajuns won on Simone Fields’ shot with .9 left.

Softball returns home: The softball team beat Incarnate Word 11-2 on Wednesday, improving to 14-4. The Bobcats have won five straight at home. Junior pitcher Randi Rupp struck out 10 of the 14 batters she faced and now has 95 for the season. She improved to 9-2.

The Bobcats hit four home runs and shortstop Ariel Ortiz was one single away from hitting for the cycle. She has six home runs on the season with 17 RBIs and is batting .280.

Texas State’s next three games are on the road, including a two-game Sun Belt Conference series at Coastal Carolina (13-3) this weekend.

A baseball honor for Ortega: Sophomore infielder Jonathan Ortega was named the Sun Belt’s player of the week after hitting .611 in four games last week. Texas State went 3-1 in those games, including a sweep of Richmond, to improve to 6-7.

Ortega recorded at least two hits in each game last week. In the first game against Richmond last Friday, he posted a career-high seven RBIs on five hits. He hit a home run in the first and second games against the Spiders, marking the first time he’s homered in back-to-back games.

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