Marshall Wins C-USA Softball Championship
TULSA, Okla. - No. 4 seed Marshall won its first Conference USA Softball Championship Saturday at the Collins Family Softball Complex on the campus of the University of Tulsa. The Thundering Herd posted a 3-1 win against No. 2 Houston to earn the league's automatic berth into the NCAA Tournament. C-USA teams will learn their postseason fate during the NCAA Division I Softball Selection Show, scheduled to air Sunday, May 12 at 10 p.m. EDT on ESPNU.
Marshall struck first in the bottom of the second inning, scoring twice after a Katalin Lucas double down the right field line sent Savanah Webster to third and a throwing error that ended up in the Marshall dugout plated both runners and give the Herd a 2-0 advantage.
Houston would counter with a run in the top of the third with an unearned run of its own. Freshman center fielder Katie St. Pierre led off the inning with an infield single, advanced to second on a throwing error and came around to score two outs later on a single by C-USA Player of the Year Haley Outon.
Freshman infielder Alexandra Bayne pushed the Marshall lead to 3-1 in the bottom of the fourth, doubling down the right field line to score Bri Anna Hope, who reached base on a fielder's choice.
Tournament MVP Andi Williamson would hold the Cougars the remainder of the game, earning her 32nd win of the season while striking out four.
2013 C-USA Softball Championship All-Tournament Team
Fans can access video highlights via the C-USA Digital Network, along with live stats and other information by visiting Championship Central.
(2) Houston 3, (3) Tulsa 0 Box Score
TULSA, Okla. - The No. 2 Houston Cougars punched their ticket to the C-USA Softball Championship final with a 3-0 win over No. 3 Tulsa in the first semifinal at the Collins Family Softball Complex on the campus of the University of Tulsa. First pitch for the final is slated for 11 a.m. CDT on CBS Sports Network.
Houston junior pitcher Bailey Watts outdueled C-USA Pitcher of the Year Aimee Creger, allowing just two Tulsa hits during a complete game effort in which she faced just three batters over the minimum. After allowing a leadoff double that resulted in the first out of the game when Caitlin Everett was tagged out trying to stretch it to a triple, Watts allowed just one single and just three base runners.
The game's only scoring came in the top of the third inning from senior third baseman Holly Anderson's 12th home run of the season. After a fly out to begin the inning, senior left fielder Julia Pecina singled to left field and was sacrificed to second by freshman Katie St. Pierre. Kendra Cullum was hit by a pitch to put runners at first and second to set the table for Anderson's three-run blast to left-center.
Semifinal No. 2 - All games available on the C-USA Digital Network
(4) Marshall 1, (1) UAB 0 Box Score
TULSA, Okla. - The Marshall Thundering Herd punched their ticket to a second consecutive C-USA Softball Championship final with a 1-0 win over No. 1 seed UAB in the second semifinal at the Collins Family Softball Complex on the campus of the University of Tulsa. First pitch for the final is slated for 11 a.m. CDT on CBS Sports Network.
Marshall played "small ball" in the top of the first inning, getting a lead-off bunt single from freshman left fielder Kaelynn Greene, who would advance to second on a failed pick-off attempt, followed by another bunt single by senior center fielder Ashley Gue. When Greene was thrown out attempting to score on the play, Gue advanced to second and then to third on a throwing error. The Thundering Herd would push across a run when senior third baseman Jazmine Valle doubled to left field.
Herd starter Andi Williamson would make the run stand up, scattering six hits and striking out six batters to earn her 31st win of the season. Williamson stranded nine UAB baserunners during the game. She now has won four C-USA Championship games during the past two seasons.
TULSA, Okla. - No. 2 seed Houston posted a 9-1 win during the opening game of the 2013 C-USA Softball Championship at the Collins Family Softball Complex on the campus of the University of Tulsa. The Cougars advances to play the winner of No. 3 Tulsa and No. 6 UCF in the first semifinal scheduled for Friday at 2 p.m.
In the bottom of the first inning, Houston plated four runs to set the tone. Freshman center fielder Katie St. Pierre led off with a double down the left field line, advanced to third on a wild pitch and stole home on a double steal after shortstop Kendra Cullum stole second following a walk. Senior third baseman Holly Anderson doubled home Cullum to push the lead to 2-0.
After an intentional walk to C-USA Player of the Year Haley Outon and a Memphis pitching change, sophomore second baseman Kayla Holland singled to center field to drive in Anderson. A Memphis double play erased Holland from the base paths, but Houston would tack on one more run when sophomore first baseman Jamie Edwards singled home Outon.
After trading runs in the bottom of the second and top of the third, Houston struck again in the bottom of the third, loading the bases for Cullum, who homered to left field to stake the Cougars to a 9-1 lead.
In all, Houston had 10 hits, with three players recording multiple hits. St. Pierre finished the game 2-for-2 with three runs. Cullum was 1-for-1 with four RBI and two runs scored for Houston.
Houston starting pitcher Diedre Outon earned the win to improve to 12-6 for the season. She tossed five innings while scattering six hits and striking out three.
TULSA, Okla. - No. 3 seed Tulsa earned a 3-0 win during game two of the 2013 Conference USA Softball Championship at the Collins Family Softball Complex on the campus of the University of Tulsa. The Golden Hurricane advance to play No. 2 seed Houston in the first semifinal Friday at 2 p.m. CDT.
Tulsa broke a scoreless tie in the bottom of the third when junior third baseman Jill Barrett hit a two-run home run to right field, scoring Caitlin Everett. The Golden Hurricane added another run in the third when junior right fielder Haley Henshaw tripled home Samantha Cobb, who walked earlier.
Everett finished the game 3-for-3 with a run scored, while Barrett finished 2-for-2 with a home run and two RBI.
Tulsa starter and C-USA Pitcher of the Year Aimee Creger fired a 12-strikeout, one-hit shutout to earn the win and improve to 25-5 for the season.
TULSA, Okla. -- No. 1 seed UAB rallied for a 3-2, 10-inning win during the third game of the 2013 C-USA Softball Championship at the Collins Family Softball Complex on the campus of the University of Tulsa. The Blazers advance to play the winner of No. 4 Marshall and No. 5 East Carolina in the second semifinal scheduled for Friday at 4:30 p.m.
Southern Miss struck first in the top of the second. Junior designated player Taylor Beck stroked a one-out double to left-center field and advanced to third on a throwing error. Golden Eagles' freshman third baseman Michelle Stringer would take advantage of the UAB error, sending a sacrifice fly to deep center field to score Beck.
The Golden Eagles would increase the lead to 2-0 in the top of the third when senior second baseman Danielle LaPointe tripled home Morgan McKeever.
The score remained 2-0 in favor of Southern Miss until the bottom of the fifth when a solo home run by UAB senior right fielder Chandler Orr halved the lead.
All-C-USA First Team selection Whitney Fletcher led off the bottom of the sixth inning for UAB with an opposite-field home run to left-center to tie the game at two.
The teams would remain scoreless until the bottom of the 10th inning. Orr began the 10th with a single to center field and advanced to second on an infield bunt single from C-USA Freshman of the Year Caitlin Attfield. Following a fly out, Fletcher reached on a fielder's choice to shortstop to load the bases with one out. Senior Kate Armstrong would be the hero, laying down a bunt single to squeeze home Orr and complete the comeback.
Orr finished the game 2-for-4 with a home run, two runs scored and an RBI. Fletcher was 2-for-5 with a home run.
Lannah Campbell earned the win in relief for UAB, striking out 12 and allowing just three hits in seven innings of work.
TULSA, Okla. - No. 4 seed Marshall earned a 5-4 win during game four of the 2013 Conference USA Softball Championship at the Collins Family Softball Complex on the campus of the University of Tulsa. The Thundering Herd advance to play No. 1 seed UAB in the second semifinal Friday at 4:30 p.m. CDT.
East Carolina pushed across an unearned run in the top of the first inning when leadoff hitter junior Jill Jelnick's single to center field was aided by a two-base error on the first pitch of the game. ECU junior second baseman Kristi Oshiro singled during the next at bat to give the Pirates a 1-0 lead.
Marshall leveled the game in the bottom of the first on a Jazmine Valle home run to left field.
In the top of the third inning, ECU would again scored an unearned run after Jelnick reached base on an error by the first baseman. After an Oshiro sacrifice pushed Jelnick to second and a groundout by Alex Fieldhouse advanced her to third, a throwing error plated the second Pirates run.
Jelnick was again involved in a pair of unearned runs in the top of the fourth for East Carolina as a throwing error allowed her single to score Meredith Mitchell and Jasmine Mitchell.
After picking up a run in the bottom of the fourth on an RBI single by freshman shortstop Alexandra Bayne, Marshall struck for three runs in the bottom of the fifth to go in front for good. The Herd loaded the bases with two outs courtesy of two walks and a dropped fly ball then received a bases-clearing double from Bri Anna Hope to provide the final score.
Andi Williamson earned her 30th win of the season in the circle for Marshall, scattering five hits and not allowing an earned run.
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