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Saturday, September 30, 2023


Softball: Streak to continue in Alabama

UH Softball heads to Birmingham, Ala. for a three game Conference USA series against the Alabama-Birmingham Blazers after beating Sam Houston State 10-2 in five innings Wednesday.

Going into the matchup this weekend, the No. 9 Cougars are 41-7 on the season and 12-2 in C-USA play.

"UAB is going to bring some great pitching. They have the third best (pitching) staff in conference, and they’re always really solid defensively," head coach Kyla Holas said.

The Cougars were 12-27 at the plate against the Bearkats.

Junior shortstop Jessica Valis had two RBIs on three hits and junior second baseman Haley Valis went 1-1 with a three-run homerun, her eighth of the season.

Jessica Valis was named the C-USA co-hitter of the week Monday after going 13-for-18 during the week and setting a new UH career record for triples with 12. She passed assistant coach Kim Nesloney, who previously held the No. 1 spot with 11.

Other strong performances came from freshman first baseman Jennifer Klinkert, who was 2-for-3 with an RBI and freshman pitcher Baillie Lott who went 2-for-2 with one RBI.

But the Cougars are not the only ones who can swing the bat, said Holas said.

"They’ve got some good kids offensively who we have to look out for," she said. "We have to make sure that we are bringing our ‘A’ game."

Lott pitched all five innings Wednesday, giving up one run and four hits and striking out four. The win put Lott at 7-3 on the season and 1-1 in C-USA.

Houston will send its ace, senior pitcher Angel Shamblin, to face the Blazers. Shamblin (25-2, 0.61 ERA) is coming off a 7-inning, one-run winning performance against Tulsa on Sunday.

The Cougars are three wins away from securing the No. 1 seed position in the C-USA tournament, which Houston is hosting from May 8 to 10.

"We’ve got to beat UAB if we want to clinch," Holas said.

The double header against the UAB Blazers begins at 1 p.m. Saturday, and Game 3 against the Blazers begins at 1 p.m. Sunday

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