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Wednesday, October 20, 2021

Sports

Weekend Recap: Baseball sweeps as softball struggles to find consistency


Junior Megan Thothong became the second Cougar to hit a hole-in-one in tournament play Sunday. | File Photo/The Cougar

With the spring seasons starting up and the winter ones preparing for conference tournaments, the Cougars saw their busiest weekend of 2017 so far with seven different programs seeing action.

Here’s a quick recap of everything that went down over the weekend. For a more in-depth look at how the women’s swimming and diving succeeded in taking home their first ever conference title, check here.

Baseball

With their first real action of the season, the No. 19 Cougars went 3-0 with two victories over Wake Forest and one against Nicholls State.

Friday night, junior left-hander Seth Romero, Houston’s top prospect, pitched a gem, giving up one run on five hits and striking out 12 in 6.0 innings of work en route to an 8-1 Cougar win.

On the offensive side, the Cougar lineup knocked out 14 hits, with eight of the nine starters recording a hit. They were led by sophomore outfielder Grayson Padgett who went 3-5 with a triple and four RBIs.

Back in action Saturday night, the Cougars came back from down 3-1 to beat Nicholls State, 5-3 behind a 13-hit performance from the offense. Padgett again led the Cougars, going 3-3 with one walk and one run scored, while junior shortstop Connor Hollis went 2-3 with 2 RBIs, including a two-out two-run triple to tie it 3-3 in the fourth.

On the mound, sophomore righty Mitch Ullom picked up his eighth win as a Cougar after giving up three runs, two earned, on seven hits and striking out five in 7.0 innings.

Sunday, the Cougars completed the opening weekend sweep with a 5-4 nail-biter over Wake Forest. In a game that was marred by misplays, the two teams combined for seven errors and six unearned runs.

Padgett continued his impressive weekend, going 3-4 with 2 RBIs while junior catcher Connor Wong got hot in front of Padgett, going 3-4 with three runs scored.

For their performances, Romero and Padgett were named the American Athletic Conference Pitcher and Player of the Week, respectively.

Softball

Hosting the Rawlings Classic, the Cougars went 2-3 over the weekend, falling twice in extras to defending national champion No. 4/6 Oklahoma.

They opened the weekend on a rainy Friday night with a 12-0 (5) victory over Rhode Island. Freshman Trystan Melancon picked up her first career win in spectacular fashion, no-hitting the Rams and retiring the final 14 batters, picking up the 16th no-no for the Cougars and first since 2012.

Saturday, the Cougars returned to action with a doubleheader against the Sooners. Despite giving the champs all they could handle, the Cougars fell in both games, 7-5 (8) and 2-1 (8).

After getting to junior Paige Parker, Most Outstanding Player of the 2016 Women’s College World Series, early for three runs in the first two innings of game one, the Cougar offense struggled, while the Sooners put up six in the final three innings.

Melancon again pitched a gem in game two, giving up two runs, one earned, on seven hits in eight innings, but the offense was unable to give her any support.

The Cougars returned to action on Sunday, falling to Ole Miss 12-3 (5) and beating Incarnate Word 12-3 (6).

Senior Shelby Miller continued her hot start over the weekend, going 5-14 with five RBIs and three home runs, now tied for No. 1 in the NCAA with seven.

Golf

The Cougars finished third at the All-American Collegiate in Humble with a 12-under 852, behind only No. 13 Baylor and No. 1 Vanderbilt.

Junior Michael Perras led the way for the Cougars, finishing at 4-under for seventh overall. Following Perras senior Matt Scobie and redshirt junior Papito Gonzalez tied for 19th with 1-under 212 while sophomore Matt Williams tied for 25th at an even 216.

Senior Emmett Oh completed the team score for the Cougars with a 3-over 219 to tie for 37th.

Competing individually, redshirt freshman George Gardner had the best round of the event for the Cougars with a 68 on Sunday to finish with 216, while sophomore Zach Tracy finished tied for 46th with a 4-over 220.

The women’s golf team started the Sugar Bowl Intercollegiate Championship in New Orleans on Sunday with a splash as junior Megan Thothong became the second Cougar in school history to sink a hole-in-one in tournament action as she aced the 146-yard eighth.

After finishing day one tied for fourth, the Cougars continue with rounds two and three set for Monday and Tuesday.

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