PORT ARTHUR —
For fans wanting to watch the Astros and Rockets coverage on Comcast SportsNet Houston, there is hope. CSN Houston announced that it was offering a “FreeView,” a free trial of its programming offered to all the major TV service providers.
The free trial of the channel that only 40 percent of Houston-area households currently can see begins immediately and lasts until May 31. CSN Houston is currently the home of the Astros, the Rockets, the Houston Dynamo and many high school and college games, including broadcasts of Lamar sports from time to time.
"We understand that fans have been frustrated as we work through our negotiations with providers and have already collected more than 100,000 petitions for our network," CSN Houston President and General Manager Matt Hutchings said in a statement released Thursday. "While those negotiations must continue, our leadership team feels that this next stretch of games for the Rockets, Astros and Dynamo should be made available to the fans.
This free trial comes with a sizable loss that our network will take on, but we feel that it is the right thing to do. We are hopeful that our affiliate partners at DirecTV, AT&T, Dish, Suddenlink, Time Warner Cable and others across our region will take us up on this unprecedented offer and make it available to their customers."
Unfortunately, it doesn’t appear that the major cable providers are taking the bait. A DirecTV customer service representative told The News on Thursday that there were no plans to air the free trial at that time. Reports on Twitter and on Astros fan sites like The Crawfish Boxes also confirmed that AT&T Uverse, DISH Network, Cox Communications and Grande Communications were also not planning on carrying the free trial.
Time Warner Cable could not be reached for comment on whether it would air the free trial.
CSN Houston is a new regional sports network that is owned in part by the Astros, the Rockets and Comcast. It launched on Oct. 1, 2012 and serves a five-state area including Texas, Louisiana, Arkansas, Oklahoma and New Mexico.
PORT ARTHUR —
- Price is set to become next Lamar head coach
Lady Bulldogs power past Lady Indians, 9-1
Round 1 of softball’s version of Mid County Madness goes to the Nederland Lady Bulldogs.
- West column: Wade preparing to become an opera critic
Lady Cards sweep DH from Southeastern Louisiana
BEAUMONT — It may be just the second year of the program’s revival, but the Lamar softball team has already established a tradition: Winning the home opener on a walk-off home run.
Casey Cromwell’s three-run blast in the bottom of the seventh inning gave the Lady Cardinals a 6-4 win over Southeastern Louisiana at Ford Park in the first home game of 2014 for Lamar and the Southland Conference opener for both squads.
Lamar, which won its first game last year over UTSA on a walk-off home run by Ashley McDowell, cruised to an 8-1 win over Southeastern Louisiana in Saturday’s nightcap.
“This is why I love playing at home,” Lamar coach Holly Bruder said. “The fans really get us pumped up, and we respond.”
Cromwell hit two home runs in the opener for Lamar (5-9 overall, 2-0 Southland). Beverly Corry also homered for Lamar. Shannon Millman (3-5) was the winning pitcher for the Lady Cardinals in both games, working 1 1-3 innings of scoreless relief in the first game before firing a three-hit gem in the nightcap.
“We got tremendous pitching for both Shannon and Tina (Schulz) today,” Bruder said. “We also got some great defense, and that really helped us.”
Candyce Carter and Jenna Holland homered for Lamar in the second game. Carter had three RBIs in the game, while Holland and Julianne Viator added two RBIs apiece.
Carter closed out the game in spectacular fashion, making a diving grab in center field to turn what looked to be a sure double off the bat of Brittney Tschoepe into the final out of the game.
The two teams wrap up their three-game series with a single contest at 1 p.m. Sunday at Ford Park. All senior citizens 55 and older receive free admission.
“It’s always tough to sweep a team,” Bruder said. “We know Sunday’s game will be tough.”
- LU nine scores walk-off victory against Harvard
- Prep baseball, softball roundup
- Ayers' 39 points held Lady Cards grab share of title
- SLU exposes Lamar's warts in 71-62 finale
- David Estrada column: Dallas UFC event keyed to welterweights
- Inika McPherson 12th in high jump at World Championships
- More Sports Headlines