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Home sweet (future) home: Longhorn recruits lead high schools to titles at McCombs Field

Stamford coach Cynthia Herrera and Citlaly Gutierrez (7) give each other the ‘Horns Up’ sign as Gutierrez rounds third base following a solo home run in the Class 2A state championship game at McCombs Field in Austin on June 2, 2021. Gutierrez is a member of Texas' 2022 recruiting class.

Sophia Simpson and Citlaly Gutierrez aren't Longhorns yet, but both softball players have already gotten used to winning to McCombs Field.

Simpson and Gutierrez closed out their high school softball seasons this week with wins in one of the University Interscholastic League's championship games. Simpson won a Class 5A championship on Saturday with Barbers Hill. Gutierrez helped lead Stamford to the Class 2A title on Wednesday.

Before this week, neither Barbers Hill or Stamford had won a state championship.

McCombs Field traditionally hosts the UIL's title games and Simpson and Gutierrez both plan on playing softball at Texas. A senior at Barbers Hill, Simpson is already a UT signee. Gutierrez has pledged to the Longhorns' 2022 recruiting class.

In the Class 5A championship game, Simpson did not allow an earned run in a 4-1 win over Aledo. Simpson gave up four hits and three walks. She struck out 14 batters.

Simpson finished her senior year with a 21-0 record.

When Simpson signed with Texas this past November, Texas coach Mike White said that "Sophia is one of the top pitchers in her class in the country. Wielding a devastating change-up and deceptive movement, Sophia will rack up some impressive numbers during her career on the Forty Acres."

Like Simpson, Gutierrez was named the MVP of her championship game. In a 5-4 takedown of Crawford, Gutierrez also struck out 14 batters. Tagged for six hits and one earned run in her 25th victory of the season, Gutierrez did not walk a single batter. She also homered and scored twice for the Bulldogs.

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This past season, freshman utility player London Marder was the only player on the Texas roster who had won a state championship. Marder and Humble Atascocita took home the Class 6A crown in 2018.