HOUSTON -- The University of Houston Softball team opened its American Athletic Conference series against Memphis with a 4-1 win on Friday night at Cougar Softball Stadium.
With the win, the Cougars improve to 33-19 overall and 11-8 in The American, while the Tigers fall to 36-18 and 10-9.
Sophomore third baseman Sarah Queen made the most of her two-hit night, hitting a pair of solo home runs, her ninth and 10th of the season, in a 2-for-3 effort. The multi-home run performance is Queen’s second of the season, as she also accomplished the feat against Northwestern on March 10 as part of the Houston Hilton Plaza Classic.
Sophomore second baseman Arielle James and senior left fielder Kaylin Crumpton each recorded RBI singles, going 1-for-2 and 1-for-3, respectively, while sophomore first baseman Kelli Montgomery doubled.
In the circle, junior Savannah Heebner improved to 23-8. The native of Sedalia, Colo., scattered seven hits and one run while walking one and striking out eight. Overall, the victory is the 47th of Heebner’s career, tying her with Jamie Falco (2001-04) and Jenny Johnson (2001-04) for third all-time in program history.
The series opener was delayed two hours due to rain in the Houston area. Prior to first pitch, senior outfielder De’Zha Scott was recognized in a special ceremony as part of “Senior Weekend” at Cougar Softball Stadium.
Junior catcher Brooke Vannoy made her 102nd-consecutive start behind the plate dating back to Houston’s 7-3 win over Boston College on Feb. 12, 2017, at Cougar Softball Stadium.
3rd | The Cougars got on the board with one run in the bottom of the third inning. Montgomery opened the frame with a hit by pitch, before Vannoy traded places with her on a fielder’s choice. Following a strikeout, James delivered Vannoy from first base with a single to center field for a 1-0 advantage.
4th | Queen made it 2-0 with a solo home run in the fourth.
5th | The bats stayed alive in Houston’s next trip to the plate, as Montgomery doubled down the left-field line to lead things off. Vannoy advanced Scott, who pinch ran for Montgomery at second, to third base. Following a strikeout and hit by pitch to James that put runners at the corners, Crumpton plated Scott with a two-out single through the left side of the infield.
6th | In the sixth, Queen hit her second home run with a leadoff shot to right center to make it 4-0.
7th | Memphis hit a solo homer to lead off the seventh for the 4-1 final.
Top Offensive Players:
Sarah Queen | 2-3, 2 HR, 2 RBI, 2 R
Arielle James | 1-2, R
Kaylin Crumpton | 1-3, R
Kelli Montgomery | 1-2, 2B
Savannah Heebner (W, 23-8) | 7.0 IP, CG, 7 H, 1 R, 1 BB, 8 K
Houston looks to seize the series in game two on Saturday. First pitch is set for 2 p.m., and senior shortstop Mariah Garcia will be recognized in a special pregame ceremony.
COUGAR SOFTBALL STADIUM UPGRADES
Thanks to a record year for the Diamond Club, Houston Softball announced the addition of an LED, Daktronics video board (completed) and indoor practice facility as major upgrades to Cougar Softball Stadium.
According to Daktronics, the new outfield video board is the sixth largest at an on-campus softball stadium in the country and the second largest in the state of Texas. The board, which sits just beyond the left-field wall, stands 29-feet-3.1-inches tall and measure 24-feet-4.0-inches wide with 576 square feet of space (24-feet by 24-feet) for live video, instant replays, statistics and scoring information, graphics and animations, and sponsor messages. The display features a 13HD pixel layout for crisp, clear imagery for a great view from every seat at the stadium.
The indoor facility, which will replace the current batting cage down the right-field line, will measure 70-feet by 80-feet. The 5,600-square-foot space will feature five batting cages, measuring 60-feet long by 15-feet wide each, with retractable nets for the space to be used in a variety of ways. The facility will have a synthetic turf floor and will be temperature controlled.
In total, the two capital projects represent $1.2 million in upgrades.
The Houston Athletics Ticket Office is once again proud to offer the Shasta Pass for the 2017-18 season. For just $80, Cougar fans can purchase one Shasta Pass, which allows season-long general admission entrance to all Houston Volleyball, Soccer, Women's Basketball and Softball home games.
The Shasta Pass offers Houston fans a substantial saving as single-game tickets start at $5 for all four sports. To purchase a Shasta Pass, call 713-GO-COOGS or CLICK HERE.
JOIN DIAMOND CLUB
Fans can help support the Houston Softball program by joining the Diamond Club. To find out more information about the Diamond Club, visit UHCougars.com or call Cougar Pride at (713) 743-GoUH. For more information, CLICK HERE.