July 16, 2018 | ° F

Senior stares down all-time wins record at Rutgers


Senior starting pitcher Alyssa Landrith has 53 career wins for Rutgers putting her 12 wins short of a school record. Landrith picked up her first win of the season last Friday at the UCSB Gaucho classic.

Three years ago, senior pitcher Alyssa Landrith arrived from sunny California on the banks of the Raritan to start her collegiate softball career.

Now, she is staring down the chance to break the Rutgers’ softball team’s all-time wins record.

After earning her 53rd career win on Friday against the Santa Barbara, she is now 12 wins short of cementing her legacy with the Scarlet Knights.

Even more impressive is that she has molded herself into the ace of the staff while taking on three different conferences: the Big East, the AAC and the Big Ten. 

“I feel lucky to compete in three different conferences,” Landrith said. “Not a lot of athletes can say that they’ve done that. Everyone knows what you are going to come at them with but your job as a pitcher is to recreate yourself every game so you don’t become predictable.”

She has won at least 17 games in her first three seasons and looks to continue that track record.

“She has been our mainstay and the ace the last three years she has been here,” said head coach Jay Nelson. “She has a good work ethic and jumping conferences was a big change, because you are very familiar with other teams. You have to learn all over again. Her adaptability to changing mid-game and game to game is one of the big reasons she succeeds.”

To this point in her career, Landrith sports a 53-37 record with a 2.38 earned run average and 491 career strikeouts. She comes with some serious mileage, having started 63 consecutive games and accumulating 580.1 innings pitched.

In terms of her success, Landrith looks no further than her training and softball IQ.

“I think from year one to year two, you get stronger,” Landrith said. “You put on more muscle mass and have more explosiveness. You become smarter with batters and how to attack them by mixing speed and locations.”

When Landrith takes the mound, she doesn’t put any thought towards statistics or the record books. She focuses on helping her teammates and getting the next out to put her team in the best position possible to get the win.

“I try not to think any statistical things or records because then that causes you to be pressed and not successful,” Landrith said. “You have to think one pitch at a time, one inning at a time, one game at a time — and that’s how you win games.”

Since he has recruited her, Nelson has seen Landrith evolve into the rotation's rock.

“She is a quiet leader that leads by example,” Nelson said. “The team looks up to her to have a solid game and give them a chance. She stays calm throughout, even in the games she doesn’t pitch well. She controls her emotions well and stays calm to help her teammates finish it out. She has short term memory."

An unselfish Landrith kept her teammates in mind regarding how she has been able to get this far.

“I appreciate so much from all the teammates I’ve been with since day one,” Landrith said. “We go through it every day and it’s been a very rewarding experience being here. My composure on the mound has definitely improved from year one to year four."

Nelson pointed to Landrith’s selflessness and single-stream focus to help the team out best she can. She doesn’t care much about stats or putting herself in a long-storied history at Rutgers, but rather what benefits the entire team.

“It would be a great achievement to be number one in a record book with a long history but I don’t think that’s how she looks at it,” Nelson said. “It’s something she can look back at and be proud of, but right now we are competing to win the Big Ten Conference and that’s her main focus."

For updates on the Rutgers softball team, follow @TargumSports on Twitter.

Ryan Moran

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