Cougars go 1-2 over weekend, end 11 game win streak
All winning streaks come to an end. This was apparent over the weekend as the Connecticut women’s basketball record 111-game streak ended Friday night.
For the first time since March 12, the Cougars lost on Friday, ending their 11-game win streak. The loss comes as part of a 1-2 series against their American Athletic Conference foe, the University of Central Florida. The Cougars are now 20-7 overall and third in the AAC.
Despite notching the ninth 10+ strikeout game of his career, sixth of the season, junior Seth Romero didn’t have his best game. Although he gave up only six hits, the UCF Knights made them count, scoring five runs, four earned, in seven innings against the southpaw.
After three scoreless innings by both teams, the Cougars opened the fourth with a solo home run by sophomore designated hitter Joe Davis. After hitting 14 a season ago, the reigning AAC Freshman of the Year went deep for the first time in 2017.
Houston was unable to complete the shutdown inning though, as three straight doubles and a ground out gave the Knights a 3-1 lead after the fourth. The Cougars got one back in the top of the sixth, but a two-run shot in the bottom of the frame put the game away as the Knights won 5-2.
The Cougars came back on Saturday to tie the series at 1-1 after a two-run blast by junior shortstop Jake Scheiner led to a 3-1 victory.
A pitcher’s duel throughout, the game was scoreless after five innings until junior outfielder Corey Julks came home on a sacrifice fly after getting on with a double.
Scheiner’s time came in the sixth as he went deep for the 10th time this season, tied for No. 5 in the NCAA. The junior college transfer reached base safely in all three games over the weekend and has now reached in 17 straight games.
Sophomore righty Mitch Ullom continued his strong season on Saturday, giving up one run, none earned, on four hits in six innings. The Sweeny native is now 4-2 on the year with a 2.66 ERA.
The Knights got on the board in the bottom of the seventh on an error, but it would be all for naught, as redshirt sophomore Aaron Fletcher came in for three innings of scoreless ball.
The Knight bats woke up on Sunday, powering 13 hits en route to six runs as the Cougars dropped their first series in AAC play following the 6-1 loss. The Cougars were held to one run on seven hits as four Knight pitchers shut down the offense.
The lone bright spot for the Cougar offense was Julks, who went 2-4 and has hits in 11 straight games. Over that span, he has gone 16-44 (.364) and leads all Cougars with three triples this season.
After going the distance against UC Irvine last Sunday, senior John King was beaten up for four runs, two earned, on nine hits in 5 2/3 innings against the Knights. It is the second time King has failed to go at least six innings in six starts this season, the other being against Alabama State.
The Cougars will look to rebound on Tuesday as they host rival Rice for the first game of the Silver Glove Series with first pitch scheduled for 6:30 p.m.