MEMPHIS – The Sam Houston State softball team split a pair of games on Friday at the Blues City Classic run-ruling UT Martin before falling later in the day to host Memphis at the Tigers Softball Complex.
The highlight of the day came in the opener when senior pitcher Lindsey McLeod tossed her first career perfect game, retiring all 15 UT Martin hitters she faced, striking out 10 of them.
The Kats will continue play in the Blues City Classic on Saturday, playing Loyola-Chicago in consecutive games at 3:45 and 5:45 PM.
Sam Houston State 8, UT Martin 0 (5) (Box Score)
The Kats offense blew the game wide open in the top of the first, scoring six runs off of five hits.
The highlights being two home runs, with a three RBI shot to left center by catcher Bailey White and a solo shot to left field by second baseman Brooke Malia. This would put the Kats up 4-0 before a walk and a double down the right field line by first baseman Ashley Goetz put a couple more runners on base, and they would later score from a single by right fielder Sheridan Fisher.
McLeod was given the ball for the Kats and was dominant from the start on her way to a perfect game, the first for the Bearkats since Morgan Mikulin and Tomi Garrison combined to retire all 15 hitters in an 8-0 win over Texas Southern in 2009.
She struck out multiple hitters in four of the five innings she threw, including punching out the side on strikes, allowing only five outs in the field as she finished with 10 punchouts. It was the second time this season and the 14th time in her career that she finished with 10 or more strikeouts.
The game held 6-0 until the top of the fifth, when pinch hitter Hunter Ervin hit a two-run single up the middle, bringing the score to 8-0 and bringing the run-rule into effect.
Memphis 5, Sam Houston State 3 (Box Score)
Sam Houston couldn’t mimic their dominant offense from the first game of the day, not plating their first two runs until the top of the fifth inning and adding their third and final run in the top of the sixth. Junior pitcher Karina Sanchez pitched 4.0 innings, taking the loss with five runs, six hits and one strikeout.
Memphis got off to a quick start, scoring two runs in the bottom of the first with the help of three hits and an error. They wouldn’t score again until the bottom of the fourth, scoring three more runs off of three hits.
Freshman pitcher Regan Dunn checked into the ballgame in the start of the bottom of the fifth, taking over the reigns from Sanchez. Dunn pitched 2.0 innings, with two strikeouts and one hit.
The Kats rallied in the top of the fifth, with three hits from Kyndal Kutac, Maliaand Fisher, plating two runs. They were able to score one more in the top of the sixth when Tiffany Thompson singled up the middle, successfully stealing second and then advancing home from a couple of ground outs. The Kats weren’t able to score anymore in the seventh and dropped the game, 5-3.