Houston Hosts No. 22/23 Tulsa
April 19, 2013
ON HOUSTONHouston is in the midst of playing seven games against three ranked teams (No. 25 Louisiana, No. 22/23 Tulsa and No. 16/19 Baylor). The Cougars are receiving votes in the USA Today/NFCA Poll and have won four of five C-USA series this year.
Houston is leading the league in team batting average (.296) and have three of the top four batters in league, with Holly Anderson leading the charge at .391. Junior Haley Outon is No. 3 at .375 while freshman Katie St. Pierre checks in at No. 4 with her .373 clip.
The two upperclassmen (Outon and Anderson) also hold the top two slugging spots with Outon's .830 mark pacing the pack. Outon also ranks first in on base percentage (.529) with Kendra Cullum No. 2 at .493. Outon ranks first in home runs (13), RBI (48), total bases (93) and walks (37). Cullum leads the NCAA in hit by pitches (26) and sacrifice hits per game.
Houston also leads the league as a team in slugging (.448), on base (.410), runs (234), RBI (205), doubles (65), walks (167) and hit by pitch (51).
ON TULSATulsa (32-11, 12-3) was picked to finish first in C-USA this preseason by the league coaches and have won four of their five conference series this year.
TU ranks right behind UH in many of the offensive categories led by junior third baseman Jill Barrett who leads the team with a .380 average. Caitlin Everett is batting .346 with 19 steals and Lacey Middlebrooks is third in batting at .333. Samantha Cobb has the team lead in home runs (7) and RBI (39).
The Golden Hurricane pitching staff ranks first in the league in ERA (1.94) with Aimee Creger (17-4, 0.95) and Middlebrooks (13-3, 1.68) anchoring the staff with all but two of the 32 wins for TU this season. Middlebrooks was selected as the C-USA Preseason Pitcher of the Year.
PROMOTIONSBARK IN THE PARK (Sunday)
The following dog adoption agencies (Friends for Life, Guardian Pit Bull Rescue, Houston Human Society and Basset Hound Rescue will be on site with dogs for adoption and providing information booths on site.
Fans can also bring their dogs to the park as long as they are well-mannered, up-to-date on vaccines and on a leash.
200 red sunglasses will be given out to the first 200 fans on Saturday.
$1 off of every ticket sold at the gate this weekend from both baseball and softball will go directly to the cause. On Monday, April 22, Gallery Furniture will pick up all donated items and deliver it to West (Texas). Checks are accepted and can be made out to: Victims of West, Texas
To learn more about how you can donate with Gallery Furniture this weekend, visit GalleryFurniture.com/houstonhelps.
LAST TIME OUTHouston fell 9-1 and 10-5 at No. 25 Louisiana on Wednesday evening in Lafayette. The Cougars claimed their third C-USA series sweep of the season with three wins at UTEP (17-2, 10-7, 10-1) last weekend. Haley Outon was named C-USA
ALL-TIME SERIESHouston owns the 11-10 series edge in what is Houston's closest C-USA rivalry. TU took the series at home in Oklahoma last year winning 5-3 and 4-3 after UH opened the series with a 5-2 win. The two teams have played each year since 2006.
FOLLOW THE COOGSFollow along with Houston Cougar Softball this season on Facebook (HoustonCougarSoftball), Twitter (@UHCougarSB) and Instagram (houstoncougars). Stay tuned to UHCougars.com for live stats and news on the program.
C-USA PLAYER OF THE WEEKHaley Outon, C-USA Hitter of the Week (April 15, 2013)
Holly Anderson, C-USA Hitter of the Week (March 11, 2013)
PRESEASON ALL CONFERENCE USA TEAMHaley Outon - Preseason Player of the Year, Preseason First Team (C)
Holly Anderson - Preseason First Team (IF)
Reina Gaber - Preseason First Team (DP)
2013 C-USA Preseason Poll (1st place votes)1. Tulsa (6)
2. Houston (1)
6. East Carolina (1)
7. Memphis (1)
8. Southern Miss
2013 USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year Watch ListHaley Outon was one of 50 student-athletes named to the ASA/USA Softball watch list for Player of the Year honors. The Pflugerville (Texas) native was one of four catchers and the only player from C-USA named to the watch list.
HEAD COACH Kyla HolasHead coach Kyla Holas embarks in her 13th season at the UH helm. As the sole coach in program history, she has guided Houston to the NCAA postseason once in the program program's first, to becoming a fixture with four NCAA Regional appearances, and two Super Regional series, over the past six years.
WALKING HALEYLast year slugger Haley Outon received 14 bases on balls in 174 at bats while hitting 22 home runs (1 HR per 8 AB). This year pitchers have steered clear of the cleanup hitter, giving throwing 37 free passes while the home runs are still there (1 HR per 8.6 AB).
Outon ranks No. 8 in the NCAA in walks per game (0.9).
RECORD GRADESThe current class of Houston Cougar softball members has increased the team's record GPA each semester since they arrive to campus and the incoming freshman class in the fall only added to that. Thirteen teammates made school honor roll while the team posted a 3.43 cumulative GPA and a 3.59 semester average.
Houston was bestowed with the 2012 Conference USA Sport Academic Award for the highest GPA in the conference as 18 members of the team made Commissioner's Honor Roll.
Every member of the team was named to the C-USA Commissioner's Honor Roll this year, including Bailey Watts who finished her degree in History last semester and is in her
HIT ME WITH YOUR BEST SHOT (FIRE AWAY)Kendra Cullum leads the nation with 26 hit by pitches. The junior has bested her own school record of 21 that she set last year. Including her six hit by pitches at Kansas her freshman year, the Conroe (Texas) native ranks No. 9 in NCAA history with 53 in her career.
WE'RE GOING STREAKING...NOTEarlier this year, Houston traveled to BYU and swept their fellow Cougars to end BYU's 42-game home non-conference winning streak that dated back to 2006. Houston also ended Marshall's 14-game winning streak earlier this season, the longest stretch in the Herd's history. Last year, Houston ended Texas A&M's 34-game home winning streak in 2012 which at the time was the longest in the NCAA.
NOT SO FASTHouston leads the conference with only 12 steals allowed this season despite UH playing four of the top six NCAA leaders in the category (Alabama, Marshall, Purdue, Texas). Houston has also faced No. 13 UCF, No. 14 Texas Southern, No. 22 Lipscomb, No. 24 Jackson State. Haley Outon has thrown out six potential base thieves this season.
POLLS/RPIHouston ranks No. 45 in the latest RPI. Houston is receiving five votes in the USA Today/NFCA Poll.
CLUTCH HITTINGHouston is batting .313 with runners in scoring position with Holly Anderson batting .472 (17-for-36) during the opportune times. Sydney Gerbracht is batting at a. 429 clip (6-for-14) while Haley Outon (.380, 19-for-50) and Kayla Holland (.361, 13-for-36) are both above their averages as well.
RECORD ATTENDANCECougar Softball Stadium set an attendance record of 1,793 against Alabama on March 27, 2013. The mark topped last year's record against Texas in Houston's 2012 Striking Out Breast Cancer Game of 1,785.
UP NEXTHouston travels to Waco (Texas) for a midweek-doubleheader on Tuesday before heading to Memphis for a three-game set against the Tigers next weekend.