HOUSTON -- Macie Morrow’s solo home run in the top of the seventh gave the 4th-ranked Texas A&M softball team a 4-3 victory in game two of a doubleheader against the University of Houston (17-9) at the Cougar Softball Stadium. The win also served as head coach Jo Evans’ 700th career victory at the Division I level. The Aggies won the first game 3-0 and improved to 21-2 on the season. With the two losses the Cougars fell to 17-9.
“I’m proud of our kids. I thought we came out and played hard tonight,” commented Evans. “Houston has a good ball club. They came out in the second game really swinging the bats. I like the way Gibson just settled herself in and came back and threw very, very well. I’m pleased with the adjustments she made on the mound. Our kids just fought hard tonight. I thought our speed gave them some trouble on the base-paths and we took advantage of some of their mistakes.”
In the nightcap, both the Aggies and Cougars scored a run in the first inning. Houston took a 3-1 lead in the second off two singles by Christa Raley and Amanda Grote and a clean-up triple by Jessica Valis.
A&M pushed the equalizer across in the top of the fourth when Joy Davis drew a walk, stole second, advanced to third on a wild pitch and came home on a throwing error by Houston third baseman Raley.
With two outs in the seventh, Morrow blasted a 3-1 pitch over the center field wall to give the Aggies the 4-3 lead.
“What a great job Macie does in the seventh inning to get up there and get a good hitter’s count and then make the most it by hitting a big home run,” Evans said. “That was an exciting way to win the ballgame.”
After giving up back-to-back singles in the bottom of the seventh, Megan Gibson coaxed a fly out and a ground out to end the game and earn her ninth victory of the season. She worked seven complete allowing three runs on seven hits, one free pass. Gibson struck out seven Cougar batters.
Amanda Scarborough was credited with the 3-0 win in the circle in game one. It was her ninth of the season. She worked seven innings for the complete game shutout allowing just three hits as she struck out eight.
All three of A&M’s runs were scored in the top of the sixth. The first run broke a 37 1/3 scoreless inning streak by Cougar starting pitcher Angel Shamblin. Sharonda McDonald laid down a one-out bunt to reach; she quickly stole second and scored when center fielder Katie Bush misplayed a single by Morrow. Jamie Hinshaw followed suit with a single up the middle that brought home Morrow. Two batters later, Scarborough ripped a shot down the line for a double that scored Hinshaw from first, giving the Aggies a 3-0 lead heading into the bottom half of the inning.
“It took some time for us, in that first game, to score some runs, but we sure put some hits together in the sixth inning,” Evans said. “Scarborough did a great job on the mound; I thought she looked really good.”
Davis and McDonald combined on the night for a perfect 5-for-5 in stolen bases. Davis was also 2-for-5 at the plate with a run scored.
The Aggies will take to the road for the Florida Atlantic University Parent’s Weekend Tournament in Boca Raton, Fla. March 16-18.
Texas A&M........... 000 003 0 - 3 6 2
Houston............. 000 000 0 - 0 3 1
Win - Scarborough (9-2). Loss - Shamblin (10-4). Save - None.
WP - Scarborough. HBP - by Shamblin (Gibson).
Texas A&M........... 101 100 1 - 4 3 0
Houston............. 120 000 0 - 3 7 3
Win - Gibson (9-0). Loss - Love (2-2). Save - None.
WP - Gibson; Love.