April 14, 2013
El Paso - The University of Houston used timely hitting and a solid pitching performance by freshman Julana Shrum, on Sunday, to defeat UTEP 10-1 and sweep the three game series this weekend in El Paso.
After each team's pitchers cruised through the first two innings, Houston was able to break through with a couple of runs in the top of the third. After a groundout to start the inning, Kendra Cullum took a 1-0 pitch off the shoulder for her 24th hit by pitch of the season. Two pitches later, senior Holly Anderson drove a ball over the fence in left-center to make the score 2-0 Houston. The homerun was Anderson's second of the series and seventh of the season.
In the circle for Houston, Shrum would continue to dominate over the course of the game and took a four-hit shutout into the fifth inning. In the first four innings Shrum would allow just one runner to cross second base.
In the fifth the Cougar bats would catch fire again to add some insurance runs to their lead. Houston's first seven batters of the inning would reach base safely beginning with Cullum's leadoff homerun; her third of the season.
The Miners only run would come with two outs in the fifth inning. Morgan Rasmason rolled an infield-single to second base for UTEP and advanced to second on a throwing error. Two singles later, Rasmason scored, and the Miners were on the board.
The Cougars would score three more in the top-half of the sixth on a three-run homerun by Kayla Holland to bring the score to 10-1. Shrum was able to pitch around a two-out single in the bottom half of the inning to end the game and record her second victory of the season.
Junior catcher Haley Outon finished the weekend 6-for-8 with two grand slams, four walks and 11 runs batted in. Kendra Cullum was hit by five pitches on the weekend to bring her season total to an NCAA leading and school record 25.
With the series sweep, Houston improved to 29-12 (12-3 C-USA) on the season while UTEP fell to just 12-25 (1-13 C-USA). The Cougars moved into a second place tie with Tulsa, who they will meet in a 3-game weekend series, next weekend April 20-21 in Houston at Cougar Softball Stadium.