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Saturday, April 17, 2021

Softball

UH softball struggles to score runs in tough weekend series to Texas State


The UH softball team was swept in a three-game series at Texas State over the weekend. | Gerald Sastra/The Cougar

The UH softball team was swept in a three-game series at Texas State over the weekend. | Gerald Sastra/The Cougar

The Houston softball team had a weekend to forget when it traveled to San Marcos to take on Texas State in a three-game weekend series at Bobcat Stadium.

The Cougars managed to only score three runs over the three games, while the Bobcats put a whopping 19 during the same stretch.

Here is how the games went down:

Game one

The UH softball team lost the first of a three-game series against Texas State by a score of 6-1 Friday night in San Marcos.

Trouble started early for the Cougars and junior right-handed starting pitcher Rachel Hertenberger after a bases-loaded situation led to the pitcher walking in the first two Texas State runs. The Bobcats capped the inning off with an RBI single by right fielder ArieAnn Bell.

The UH offense struggled for a second consecutive game and didn’t collect their first hit until the top of the fifth inning when junior catcher Kati Ray Brown hit an infield single.

Both teams exchanged scoreless innings all the way until the bottom of the sixth when Texas State came out with another three-run inning.

The outburst began with a two-run double from infielder Sara Vanderford, followed by another RBI double courtesy of infielder Hailey MacKay to push the lead to 6-0.

The Cougars were able to generate traffic in the top of the seventh inning, starting with redshirt senior infielder Sarah Queen singling to lead off the inning.

Sophomore infielder Britaney Shaw promptly followed with a single of her own, setting the table for Brown to connect for her second hit of the game – a single that brought in UH’s only run of the game.

Hertenberger tossed her third complete game of the year, going six innings with five strikeouts, six walks, a wild pitch and eight hits allowed, taking her third loss this season.

Game two

Offensive woes for the UH softball offense continued in the team’s second game against Texas State, losing Saturday 8-0 in San Marcos.

The Bobcats’ pitching stifled the offense, limiting UH to a single hit that came in the form of a single to right field by junior outfielder Bethany Busch in the top of the fourth inning.

Texas State stuck true to the previous game’s winning formula by jumping on UH in the first inning with a sacrifice fly from Vanderford for the 1-0 lead.

The game was put away early when Texas State threw up a four-run second inning that included a two-run single by Vanderford, who finished the game with three RBI’s.

Texas State sprinted ahead to the finish line with a three-run bottom of the fifth, with an RBI single from centerfielder Kylie George that plated the eighth and final run. The game ended as a result of a run-rule with Texas State leading by at least eight after five innings.

The loss marked the third time in the previous six games the UH offense had been shutout.

Game three

The theme of first-inning scoring continued for Texas State after Vanderford hit a solo home run to put her team up early. Vanderford finished the weekend series with six RBI’s, going four-for-six with two walks.

UH didn’t wait until late in the game to score their first run, and they found themselves in a bases-loaded situation in the bottom half. A sacrifice fly from Brown that was sent to the warning track evened the score, bringing in Shaw.

Both teams were locked in a pitcher’s duel with UH’s sophomore right-hander Megan Lee going more than five innings, surrendering three earned runs along with a walk and four strikeouts on four hits.

It was in the bottom of the fifth inning when Texas State scored a pair of unearned runs.

Sparked by a leadoff walk, back-to-back errors by Queen allowed a run to cross the plate. With runners on the corners, another run scored on a successful double-steal on the throw-down to second base.

UH scratched to cut the two-run deficit in half thanks to some manufacturing from Busch. After hitting a two-out single, she stole second base then scored on a throwing error from the catcher after she stole third base.

Texas State regained their composure and got the run back plus one after a decisive two-run single put them back out in front by three.

The score remained the same for the rest of the game as UH lost their fourth consecutive game 5-2.

The offense and pitching struggled for the entirety of the series. The team batted .169 on 11-for-65 hitting and scored only three runs while surrendering 19 runs on 23 hits.

The UH softball team is now 7-9 following the weekend series with Texas State and will make its return to Cougar Softball Stadium when it hosts McNeese this Wednesday at 6 p.m.

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