Blazers light up UH pitching

Freshman Bailey Watts suffered the same fate on the mound as several of her teammates, as she surrendered a grand slam in Saturday’s 11-3 loss at UAB. The Cougars were swept by the Blazers in the three-game series and have now lost five consecutive contests. | Kendra Berglund/The Daily Cougar

After ending their three-game series at UAB with an 11-3, six-inning loss Saturday, the Cougars came home empty handed as they failed to get a win at this weekend’s three-game Conference USA series.

The Cougars lost the first game 3-2 and the second 8-2 Friday and sit at 18-19 overall and 5-7 in C-USA play.

After returning from an injury that affected her all of last week, UH righthander Amanda Crabtree took the mound on Saturday.  Crabtree started off by allowing a leadoff double and a bunt single in the bottom of the first.  After surrendering another hit to the load bases, Crabtree struck out Mandy Lowman, but Kayla Orr followed with a single to left field to stake the Blazers to an early 2-0 lead.

Crabtree continued to struggle, walking two more batters before being relieved by freshman Bailey Watts, who inherited a bases-loaded jam and a 4-0 deficit that ballooned to 8-0 when UAB’s Martina Landrum smacked a grand slam over the left field wall.

Head coach Kyla Holas said this weekend’s performance illustrates a need to re-examine the staff’s approach on the mound.

“I think our pitching staff is completely lost,” Holas said. “This coaching staff has a lot of work to do this week to get them back.”

Brooke Lathan led off the second with a triple, but was left stranded. The Cougars finally broke through in the third, scoring two runs on hits by Katy Beth Sherman and Mary Tyler Dobson to cut the deficit to 8-2.  This pair would again record back-to-back singles with one out in the fifth inning, but they would be left on base after Sherman was caught stealing.

UH catcher Melissa Gregson hit a solo shot to right center field in the sixth to make the score 8-3.  The Blazers (20-9, 6-3) delivered the finishing blow in the bottom of the frame by scoring three more runs, ending the contest due to the run rule.

Hoping to get back on track this week, the Cougars will face off against Prairie View A&M in a midweek doubleheader starting at 4 p.m. Tuesday.

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