Lamar softball wins doubleheader against Sam Houston State
BEAUMONT, Texas – The Lamar Lady Cardinals broke out of
their hitting funk in a big way Saturday, crushing six home runs en route to a
doubleheader sweep of visiting Sam Houston State in a Southland Conference
softball doubleheader at Ford Park.
The Lady Cardinals (14-18 overall, 5-3 Southland) blasted
three homers in a 9-4 win in the opener before hitting three more in the
nightcap, a 5-4 victory in eight innings.
“We were hungry,” said Lamar first baseman Ashley McDowell,
who hit three homers on the day. “We know we hadn’t been hitting the ball as
well as we should have, and we focused on changing that today.”
McDowell hit two home runs in the opening game, both solo
blasts, while Candyce Carter added a two-run shot as the Lady Cardinals snapped
their three-game skid while ending the three-game winning streak of Sam Houston
State (15-17, 3-5).
McDowell, Carter and Tina Schulz each had two RBIs for
Lamar, giving starter Shannon Millman more than enough support. Millman allowed
seven hits and four runs, all earned, in a complete-game win.
Tiffany Castillo hit a two-run homer for Sam Houston State
in the first game.
McDowell’s biggest home run of the day came in the second
game as she hit a one-out homer in the bottom of the seventh to tie the game at
4. That came after Sam Houston State scored two unearned runs in the top of the
seventh to take a 4-3 lead just minutes after Beverly Corry’s second homer of
the game gave Lamar a 3-2 lead with a solo home run in the bottom of the sixth.
“We showed some character in that second game by bouncing
back after we fell behind late and after making four errors,” Lamar coach Holly
Bruder said. “Four errors isn’t usually a good formula for winning games, but I
like the way we overcame that.”
Millman (8-7) picked up the win in relief, allowing two hits
over 1 2/3 innings of scoreless relief. Lamar starter Tina Schulz allowed nine
hits and four runs, one earned, over 6 1/3 innings.
“I think it’s great that Shannon bounced back and got two
wins after having a rough start at Texas Southern,” Bruder said. “She gave us a
great effort today. And Tina really battled out there after missing the last
few days due to illness.”
Tori Benavidez, Cecilia Castillo, Ashley Isbell and Jessica
Slater had two hits apiece for Sam Houston State in the second game.
Lamar will go for its first-ever three game conference sweep
when it hosts Sam Houston State at 3 p.m. Sunday at Ford Park.
“When you win the first two games it takes a lot of pressure
off you,” Bruder said. Sam Houston State is the one with all the pressure,”
Tickets for Sunday’s game will be available at Ford Park on
a cash-only basis one hour prior to first pitch.
Wednesday, April 23 2014, 10:23 AM CDT