UH softball starts season off strong at Houston Invitational
Houston softball opened its 2022 season going 4-1 over the weekend in the Houston Invitational, which featured UTSA, Texas Tech and Dayton.
UH took both games against UTSA, split its pair of games against Texas Tech and crushed Dayton 14-1.
UH made a strong statement to open its season, defeating UTSA 13-1 on Friday night.
Graduate student infielder Becca Schulte got things going with a three-run home run in the bottom of the first.
Following a two-run single at the bottom of the second, senior outfielder Aspen Howie made it 8-0 with a three-run homer was.
Schulte capped off a giant second inning with her second home run of the game to put the Cougars up 9-0.
Two separate fielding errors in the third allowed for three more UH runs.
Senior Kenna Wilkey earned the win, throwing four shutout innings and striking out seven.
UH’s second game against UTSA was more competitive with multiple lead changes throughout the afternoon.
Following a quiet first and second inning, things started to heat up in the third when UTSA scored the first run of the game.
UH answered in the bottom half of the inning on an RBI single by junior infielder Paige Husley.
The Cougars increased their lead to 3-1 on a two-run double was struck by freshman infielder Ja’Naiya Thomas.
Schulte followed with an RBI single to make it 4-1.
UTSA fought back with four runs in the fourth and retook the lead.
UH tied the game once again with a bases-loaded walk in the bottom of the fourth.
Following a quiet fifth inning, big hits from freshman infielder LA Matthews and Schulte made it a game 7-5.
A throwing error from UTSA allowed for two more UH runs.
With no hits by UTSA in the seventh, UH secured their second win of the season with a 9-5 score.
Saturday’s second game against Texas Tech was the textbook definition of a pitcher’s duel.
UH did not have a hit through six innings and the Red Raiders were limited to just five hits on the night.
With the game still scoreless, an unexpected power outage in the stadium led to a nearly 20-minute delay just as the sixth inning was beginning.
Following the delay, Texas Tech broke the tie on an RBI single from right fielder Carson Armijo.
The Cougars rallied in the bottom of the seventh, breaking up the no-hitter and getting runners on first and third with no outs. But Texas Tech starting pitcher Kendall Fritz, who pitched a complete game, one-hit shutout, got out of the jam and the Cougars fell 1-0.
Senior right-hander Saleen Flores, who pitched 5 and 2/3 innings giving up one run, suffered the loss.
UH started the final day of the Houston Invitational off with another game that ended due to the mercy rule against Dayton.
The Cougars had a huge first inning, putting up seven runs.
The streak started with a fielding error followed by two singles and a flyout ending with a two-run shot by senior catcher Kati Ray Brown.
During the top of the second Dayton scored its first and only run of the game.
UH added five more runs in the bottom of the third.
Making sure to end on a good note, Brown launched her second homer of the day soon followed by a solo shot by senior outfielder Bethany Bush to put the exclamation point on a 14-1 victory.
Junior right-hander Megan Lee earned the win.
UH redeemed its only loss of the weekend in its second game against Texas Tech.
The Red Raiders took the lead early on with a run in the first.
The UH bats were quiet until the fourth when Brown tied the game with an RBI single.
A wild pitch allowed UH to take the lead later in the inning.
Freshman infielder Kylee Gibson made it 3-1 on an RBI single to cap off a big fourth inning.
Wilkey did her job in the circle, pitching a complete game to secure a 3-1win for the Cougars.