BEAUMONT, Texas – The Texas A&M - Corpus Christi softball team put together another dominating performance today to roll past Lamar, 5-2, and sweep the series finale at Ford Park. The Islanders (13-30, 8-12 SLC) outhit Lamar (19-21, 12-8 SLC), who was in second place in the conference heading into the weekend, 25-14, in the three games combined.
Senior Valerie Perez powered the Islanders' offense, going 2-for-2 today with a home run. For the weekend, she hit .625 and blasted two home runs while chipping in six RBIs. Freshman Liz Carter also had a solid weekend in the Islanders' circle, posting two wins and a 0.93 ERA. She allowed just eight hits and two runs in 15 innings, while recording 10 strikeouts. Today, she did not allow any runs until the top of the seventh, while registering five strikeouts in seven innings for her 10th victory of the season.
The Islanders' bats came out strong in the opening frame to load the bases, but were unable to push any runs across. Hayley Galloway ripped a leadoff single to left center before being called out on a fielder's choice by Brittney Morse. With one out, Perez was hit by the pitch, before Carter loaded the bases with a single through the middle. The Lady Cardinals' pitcher Tina Schulz retired the side, leaving three Islanders stranded.
With two outs in the top of the third, Perez put the Islanders on the board after she cranked her sixth homer of the season and the second one of the series over the left field wall. The senior now has nine career home runs in her four years as an Islander.
A&M - Corpus Christi's defense continued to be aggressive, holding Lamar off the board after a two-hit top of the fourth put runners on first and second with two outs. After a fielder's choice and single to left field, Carter came up strong with her third strikeout of the game.
The Islanders put runners in scoring position in the top of the fifth with two outs. Morse reached on an infield error at shortstop before Perez blasted her second hit of the game to center field. With Morse on third and Perez at first, Carter hit a ground out to second to end the frame.
Carter then retired the next six Lady Cardinals in the fifth and sixth frames before the Islanders put together a four-run top of the seventh on four hits and one error by Lamar. Dani Tefft led off with a single through the right side before collecting her 11th stolen base of the season. In just her first two years she now has tied Andrea Simancas career record of 18 at No. 10 in the Islanders top-10 career records. Galloway followed with a single to right field before Morse hit a RBI ground out to plate Tefft and advance Galloway to second. After Perez reached on an intentional walk, Mickayla Cochran loaded the bases after she nailed a single to left field. J.J. Jackson then stepped to the plate and drilled a two-run single to center field to score Perez and Galloway. On the same play, a throwing error by Lamar advanced Jackson to second and scored Cochran to extend the Islanders lead to 5-0.
Lamar added a pair of runs in the bottom of the seventh after Ashley McDowell hit a two-run home run over the left field wall with one out. Carter settled in and retired the next two Lady Cardinals to earn her 10th victory in the Islanders' circle.
Along with Perez, Galloway added a pair of hits, while Carter, Cochran, Jackson, Tefft and Mackinzee Griebel all chipped in one apiece.
Carter (10-16) allowed just six hits and two runs, while striking out five in seven innings.
Schulz (8-11) recorded the loss for Lamar. She allowed seven hits, four runs and one walk, while striking out three in 6.1 innings.
The Islanders will travel to College Station, Texas, to take on Texas A&M in a doubleheader on Tuesday, April 22. The first pitch is slated for 4 p.m.
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