HUNTSVILLE – The Sam Houston State Bearkats dropped both ends of a doubleheader at Central Arkansas, each in walk-off fashion, on Friday at Farris Field.
The Kats held the lead for the majority of Game 1 before a three-run seventh spelled doom in the opener. One game later the Bears rallied for a late run before a second walk-off single clinched the series in the nightcap.
Sam Houston look to salvage a game in the series on Saturday when they close things out with the Bears. First pitch is set for 1 p.m. from Farris Field.
Game 1 – Box Score
Central Arkansas 7, Sam Houston 6
Sam Houston led nearly all the way,but gave up a three-run seventh inning as Central Arkansas walked off with a 7-6 win in the opener of the day’s doubleheader.
Bearkat starter Lindsey McLeod took a no-decision after 5.1 innings in the circle, but could not make it through the sixth despite the Bearkats holding as much as a 4-1 lead. She would allow
four runs on five hits in 5.1 frames before handing it off to Kaitlynn Dawson in the sixth. Dawson and Darby Fitzpatrick each pitched 0.2 innings with Fitzpatrick taking the loss to fall to 0-6 on the year.
Sam Houston out-hit Central Arkansas 13-10 with three hits coming off the bat of Tiffany Thompson who scored a run and batted one in with also Codi Carpenter adding three hits of her own. Brooke Malia and Bailey White had two hits each and combined for three RBI in the game.
The first inning saw only a single hit from Thompson but the scoring started in the second inning off the bat of Taylar Fuselier who shot a single straight up the middle to score Megan McDonald who had reached on a double. UCA would answer in the bottom of the inning by a RBI double from Kaylyn Shepherd, but McLeod would stop the damage there with a strikeout and pop up to keep things tied at 1-1.
The Kats added two more runs to take a 3-1 lead an inning later thanks to a two-run single from White Sam would another run in the top of the fifth after four straight hits set up a sacrifice fly from Megan Crosby to boost the Bearkat lead 4-1.
The Bears started to respond with a sacrifice fly of their own by Kate Myers cutting the lead to two runs in the fifth. Sam scored another run in the sixth on an RBI double from Thompson to bump the lead up to 5-2.
UCA answered once again in the bottom of the inning with a pair of runs to trim it to 5-4, but the Kats tacked on another insurance run in the top of the seventh when Malia tripled home pinch runner Samantha Belongia.
But things would not go so smoothly in the seventh for Sam Houston. UCA opened the inning with three straight singles, including a two-run knock from Libby Morris that tied things up at 6-6. Fitzpatrick would manage to get each of the next two outs, but could not get the third as Lauren Brooks singled to left field to drive home the game’s winning run.
Game 2 – Box Score
Central Arkansas 3, Sam Houston 2 (9 innings)
The Bearkats fell once in the nightcap game of the doubleheader in nine innings after Central Arkansas walked it off to win 3-2.
Sam Houston got eight hits from four different players, including three and an RBI from McDonald. Carpenter also added a hit and an RBI, while Belongia and White had two hits each.
Two pitchers saw time in the circle with McLeod picking up the loss to move to 8-7 on the season after 3.1 innings of relief work during which she allowed one run on four hits striking out three Bears. Rachel Haberman picked up the win for the Bears to move to 2-0 after 5.0 innings of work only allowing no runs on four hits.
Sam Houston got off to a quick start in the opening frame with the second and third batters reaching and moving into scoring position by wild pitch. That’s when Carpenter placed a well put ball down the middle to score McDonald giving the Kats a 1-0 lead. Central Arkansas would match it on their own with a Kaylyn Shepherd sacrifice fly in the bottom of the inning.
The next three innings the pitchers would duel it out putting zeros on the boards but the Kats scored in the fifth when McDonald doubled home Belongia to put the Kats back in front 2-1. But that lead would be short-lived as UCA put up another run of their own in the sixth, tying it up on an RBI single from pinch hitter Briana McArthur.
Sam would strand a pair of runners in the seventh and then McLeod would pitch around a leadoff triple in the bottom half of the inning to force things into extras. Things would remain quiet until the home half of the ninth when the Bears put two of their first three batters on base via hit-by-pitches. That set things up for Shepherd who gave UCA hits second walk-off win of the day with a single into left field.