Despite a 5-4 road loss to Northwestern State in the final regular season finale, Sam Houston will be the No. 3 seed at next weekend’s Southland Conference softball championship back in Natchitoches.
Texas A&M-Corpus Christi defeated Central Arkansas 6-5 Sunday to keep the Kats in the third spot. Sam Houston ended Southland play with an 18-11 and a .621 winning percentage. UCA is No. 4 seed after a 16-10 record and .615 percentage in league action.
McNeese State defeated Nicholls Sunday afternoon to wrap up the Southland Conference regular season title. The Cowgirls will be the No. 1 seed while tournament host Northwestern State earned the No. 2 seed after taking the series from SHSU two victories to one.
After a Saturday split which saw Northwestern State edge the Kats 5-4 in extra innings and Sam Houston win 8-2 in the nightcap, the Demons took an early lead Sunday.
Briana Rodriguez’s RBI double and a run-scoring single by Cassandra Barfield gave the Demons a 2-0 lead in the second inning. Barfield’s solo home run extended the lead to 3-0 in the third.
Sam Houston got on the board with Kim Damian, Hillary Adams and Tiffany Castillo produced three consecutive singles. Damian scored on Castillo’s shot to right field.
The Castillo sisters paired to cut the Demon lead to 5-4 as Tiffany doubled to center for an RBI and Cecilia sent a blast over the center field fence to score two more runs. The home run was the Kats’ seventh of the series.
Kylie Roos blanked the Kats in the seventh inning to pick up a complete game win in the circle for the Demons. Both teams totaled eight hits. Damian and Tiffany Castillo led SHSU at the plate with two hits apiece. Haley Baros was the losing pitcher.
Sam Houston ends the regular season with an overall mark of 33-23. Northwestern State enters the tournament with a 38-13 season record and a league mark of 19-8.
The Bearkats will open their Southland tournament play at approximately 1:30 p.m. Thursday against the No. 6 seed at the Demon Softball Field. Should SHSU win, they would face Northwestern State again Thursday night.
An all-tournament pass, which allows entry into all 11 possible games of the tournament, is on sale $17 for adults or $12 for youth. An all day pass, which will include four games on Thursday and Friday with the maximum of three games on Saturday, is $9 for adults and $7 for youth.
All students of Southland Conference schools will receive free admission with a valid student ID, and all children ages five and younger will also be admitted free.
To purchase tickets, call the Northwestern State Ticket Office at 318-357-4268 or visit the university's athletic tickets website at http://nsutickets.universitytickets.com