Feb. 10, 2013
HOUSTON - The University of Houston softball team erupted for 17 runs while allowing only one in wins over Lipscomb (10-1) and Texas State (7-0) to close out the 2013 Houston Hilton Plaza Classic on Sunday at Cougar Softball Stadium.
Houston (4-2) posted three wins over the Bobcats (0-5) to begin the season and split the series with Lipscomb (3-2) while falling to Iowa (3-2) in the opening weekend tournament.
"We asked the team `What type of team do you want to be?' Yesterday, they all sat down afterwards and decided what they wanted to make of the season and it showed today. There was great energy and communication out there, which leads to success like we had today."
After committing eight errors and scoring only 13 runs in the first four games, Houston played nearly mistake free ball on Sunday to sweep the day while scoring four more runs on the day than they had in the previous four games combined.
"Overall for the weekend, I really enjoyed where our pitchers were. I was really excited for Julana today, she did a very good job in pushing through challenging moments (in her first collegiate pitching appearance). She kept a very good hitting team."
The pitching staff allowed 16 runs over the tournament with three coming unearned and 28 strikeouts in 39 innings of work.
"Our offense was better today but we need to focus on hitting this week. You can look at all those runners we left on base that would have helped take pressure off the pitchers and bring the pressure to the other teams."
Houston 10, Lipscomb 1 (5)
The Cougars made quick work of the Bisons in the morning game capturing a five-inning, run-rule win.
With Houston down 1-0 in the second inning, sophomore Kayla Holland turned the game's momentum around with a two-out three-run homer.
The Katy (Texas) native helped spark the next scoring inning in the fourth when she took an inside pitch for an earned trip to first. Diedre Outon drew a walk before both runners would come around to score on back-to-back singles by the top of the order hitters, Katie St. Pierre and Kendra Cullum.
Freshman Tess Soefje made the most of her first career at bat, coming in as a pinch hitter in the fifth inning. The backup catcher to Haley Outon doubled over the right fielder's head to open the five-run inning.
Sophomore Summer Groholski improved to 2-0 on the year with four strikeouts and one walk in her second start.
Houston 7, Texas State 0
The Houston offense picked up right where it left off after the morning game against the Bisons as they tallied seven runs in the first four innings against the Bobcats. An hour delay due to weather delayed the game between Louisiana and Iowa but the bats apparently did not cool down during the intermission.
Cullum carried a line drive shot over the fence to put Houston up one after the second at bat of the game for UH. Holly Anderson delivered one of her two doubles in the game immediately after and was brought around to score on senior Reina Gaber's two-bagger. Taylor Duplechain's line drive single scored Gaber and Houston would never look back.
Freshman Julana Shrum went the distance earning her first win in a Cougar uniform, in her first appearance. She allowed six base runners (four hits, two walks) with only one stepping on third as she earned the shutout.
Anderson batted 4-for-4 in the game and leads the team with eight hits on the year.
Cougar Softball Stadium will serve host to the Hilton Houston Plaza Invitational next weekend with DePaul, Illinois and No. 7/9 Texas. The Cougars begin play Friday Feb. 15 against DePaul at 3 p.m.