HOUSTON, Texas— McNeese softball held off a late Houston rally here Wednesday night to pick up a 4-3 win to improve to 8-12 on the year and extended its winning streak to five games.
Cori McCrary picked up where she left off from the weekend to lead the Cowgirls at the plate with a 3 for 3 performance including two doubles, one RBI and scored two runs.
Saleen Flores improved to 4-3 on the year with the win after giving up three hits, one unearned run, no walks, and one strikeout in five innings.
Whitney Tate picked up her first save of the season and second of her career after allowing three hits without giving up a run in 1 2/3 innings.
McNeese outhit Houston (7-10) 9-7 and continued to lead the nation in double plays by adding two more tonight. Chloe Gomez went 2 for 3 including her second home run of the season in the fifth inning.
The Cowgirls scored a single run in the first and two in the second for a 3-0 lead before Gomez’s homer put the Cowgirls up 4-0. Houston got one run back in the fifth and two more in the sixth on a two-run home run off Cowgirl first reliever Jenna Edwards.
McNeese took advantage of a few early mistakes by Houston to take a 1-0 lead in the top of the first inning. McCrary, the Cowgirls leadoff hitter was hit by a pitch, stole second then scored on a throwing error by Houston’s catcher who attempted to throw McCrary out at second base. The throw sailed right and went all the way to the centerfield wall allowing McCrary to score.
The Cowgirls added two more runs on four hits in the second inning to take a 3-0 lead. Padyn Williams singled through the left side with one out then advanced to second on a ground out by Caleigh Cross. McCrary doubled down the left-field line to score Williams and McCrary scored on a single up the middle by Kaylee Lopez.
McNeese added another run in the fifth when Gomez was thought to be hit by a pitch but the home plate umpire ruled it a foul ball. After an umpire meeting, the call stood and Gomez returned to the batter’s box. The call to put Gomez back in the box worked out in the Cowgirls’ favor as Gomez hit the next pitch over the left-centerfield wall for her second home run this season to give McNeese a 4-0 lead.
The Cougars got on the board with a run on a two-out single to third base that scored Lindsey Stewart. Stewart reached base on an error.
Houston cut the McNeese lead to one run in the sixth when Sarah Queen’s two-run home run off Edwards cut the Cowgirl lead to 4-3.
The Cougars put the tying run on third off a single by Rock Benavedes with two outs but Tate, the second Cowgirl reliever got Tierrah Williams to ground out to Aaliyah Ortiz at first base to end the game, giving Tate her second career save.
McNeese will return home this weekend to host Central Arkansas in its Southland Conference opening series. A single game is scheduled for Friday with a doubleheader on Saturday.