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Tuesday, September 25, 2018

Softball

Bearkats host softball for double header


With four players hitting more than .300 and a pitching staff continuing to shut down opponents, the Cougars look to take the advantage over a Sam Houston State team with a losing record at home. | File photo/The Cougar

After four straight games at Cougar Softball Stadium, the softball team is again hitting the road,  this time for a double header in Huntsville against the Sam Houston State Bearkats on Tuesday.

The Cougars enter the game having gone 2-2 in the Houston Round Robin, winning both matches against the Eastern Kentucky Colonels, but dropping both games against the Dartmouth Big Green. Twice it took extra innings to decide the outcome, with the Cougars winning one and losing one.

The Bearkats will enter Tuesday’s game having dropped a three game series against the McNeese State Cowgirls. Despite winning the first game, the Bearkats lost the final two with the third one ending in five innings by the score of 10-1.

On the year, the Bearkats are 11-16 with only a 6-7 record at Bearkat Softball Complex. The way their season progressed, it appears they are on their way to a fourth straight losing season.

The Cougars in contrast are 17-9 on the year and 11-5 at home. They have yet to play a true away series but are 2-1 in away games and 4-3 at neutral sites.

At the moment, the Cougars have a good balance of hitting and pitching. Even with the two losses to Dartmouth, those were both games the Cougars had chances of winning. The Big Green had just a little more luck.

On offense there are four different Cougars hitting more than .300. Sophomores Sarah Queen and Arielle James lead the team with 31 hits a piece, with Queen also leading the team in runs batted in (16) and home runs (5).

With regard to pitching, the rotation of junior Savannah Heebner, sophomore Trystan Melancon and junior Presley Bell has been on point for the most part. Heebner improved her win total to 10-2 over the weekend with an earned run average of 0.80.

Of their combined 26 starts they have thrown 16 complete games and all have an ERA of around 2.00 or better: a 1.58 ERA for Bell and a 2.01 ERA for Melancon. Melancon is also second on the team with 44 strikeouts in nine starts.

Tuesday’s games at Sam Houston State will be played at 3 p.m. and 5 p.m. at Bearkat Softball Complex.

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