CORPUS CHRISTI – Liz Carter scattered five hits in a complete-game victory, as the Texas A&M-Corpus Christi softball team knocked off Sam Houston State 3-2 on Sunday at Chapman Field. The Islanders (15-33, 10-13 Southland) won their third straight conference series and have gone 8-3 over their last 11 league games.
Carter surrendered two runs, but only one of them was earned, and gave up just one walk. She also punched out three, improving to 12-17 on the year. Shelby Lancaster was carded with the loss for the Bearkats (25-23, 14-9), surrendering seven hits and one walk in six innings, as only one of the three runs she gave up was earned.
Mickayla Cochran went 2-for-4 for the Islanders, while five other players had one hit apiece. Sarah Allison was the lone Bearkat with multiple hits, going 2-for-3 with an RBI and a run scored. Prior to the game, A&M-Corpus Christi honored its four seniors – Valerie Perez, Jamise Jackson, Laura Phillips and Constance Brandenburg – for their final home weekend contest.
The Islanders did all their damage in the bottom of the fifth. Mackinzee Griebel reached on an error with one out, and A&M-Corpus Christi followed with three straight singles. Perez sent Griebel to second on a single inside the left-field line, and Carter followed by smashing a single to left, plating Griebel to cut the deficit to 2-1. Brittney Morse came up next, and ripped a ball on the left side for an RBI single of her own as Perez tied it up. Jackson capped it off with a groundout that plated Carter for a 3-2 Islanders lead.
After the Islanders took the lead, Carter then had an impressive sixth inning to retain the advantage. The freshman got the leadoff hitter on a groundout, then surrendered a 12-pitch walk to Hillary Adams. Allison then got ahead 3-0, but Carter put the next nine pitches in the strike zone, the final one falling into Cochran's glove in center field. Carter then struck out Tori Koerselman looking to end the inning and maintain a one-run lead.
In the seventh, Carter got the first two batters before Jessica Slater reached on a bunt single. She then advanced to second on a wild pitch, but Perez made a tremendous basket catch in foul territory to finish off the victory for the Islanders.
Early on, both pitchers were strong, keeping it scoreless for the first three innings. A&M-Corpus Christi had the best opportunity early in the contest, threatening with a strong inning in the bottom of the second. Cassie Carroll started the rally with a one-out single, and a fielder's choice left Lindsey Lyles at first with two away. Dani Tefft and Cochran followed with infield singles, but a groundout by Griebel ended the threat.
The Bearkats were the first to crack the scoreboard, plating a pair of runs in the top of the fourth. Tiffany Castillo led off by singling up the middle, and pinch-runner Dani Allen stole second to move into scoring position. Carter bounced back with a strikeout of Adams, but Allison sent a single through the left side, scoring Allen to make it 1-0, and advanced to second on the throw to the plate. After an error put runners at the corners, Alyssa Coggins sent a sacrifice fly to center to push the advantage to 2-0.
The Islanders will return to action with a midweek contest against Houston on Wednesday at 3 p.m. on Chapman Field. Live stats and video will be available on GoIslanders.com, and updates will also be provided on Twitter (@IslandersSBall).