SOFTBALL: Henderson’s home run streak now at three games

Published 11:23 pm Saturday, April 7, 2018

Lamar sports information

HUNTSVILLE – Shelby Henderson homered for the third straight game, but the Lamar Cardinals failed to complete a series sweep of the Houston State Bearkats, dropping an 8-4 decision in Southland Conference softball action Saturday afternoon.

The Cardinals (22-18 overall, 8-7 Southland) could not dig themselves out of an early hole that saw them trail 4-0 after one inning and 5-2 after two innings.

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“I thought we were very lackadaisical today after playing so well in a doubleheader sweep on Friday,” LU coach Holly Bruder said. “I think we disrespected Friday’s performance by the way we played today. I hope making the tournament doesn’t come down to this game.”

Sam Houston State (14-26, 6-9), which was held in check by LU right-hander Laura Napoli in LU’s 6-1 series-opening win on Friday, got to Napoli in the first inning on Saturday, as the LU senior lasted just 2/3 of an inning, allowing two hits and three walks. Napoli (10-9) wasn’t helped by an LU defense that committed two errors in the inning, as only one of the four runs was earned.

Henderson put the Cardinals on the board with her sixth HR of the year, a two-run shot to left field in the top of the second to cut LU’s deficit to 4-2. The Bearkats added an unearned run in the second off LU reliever Anissa Rodriguez to make the score 5-2.

Rodriguez, who worked 4 1/3 innings, kept the Cardinals in the game. Rodriguez allowed six hits and two runs, just one earned.

“Anissa pitched well this weekend,” Bruder said. “She is making the most of her opportunities.”

The Cardinals cut the Sam Houston State lead to 5-4 in the top of the fifth on a two-run double by Kelly Meeuwsen, who boosted her career total to 98 RBIs, second all-time at LU. The Cardinals had a chance to tie the game later in the inning, but Meeuwsen was thrown out at the plate on a disputed call on Kendall Talley’s single.

The Bearkats broke the game open with three runs in the bottom of the sixth to close out the scoring. Megan McDonald opened the inning with a single off Rodriguez, who was lifted for Taylor Gruell. The Bearkats got to Gruell for three hits in 1/3 of an inning to make it 8-4 before Amie Cisneros came on to get a 9-4-6 double play to end the inning.

Meeuwsen had a one-out single in the seventh, but Sam Houston State starter Lindsey McLeod (10-9) got the final two batters to finish off the complete-game win. McLeod, who allowed six runs but struck out 12 in Friday’s 6-1 LU win, allowed six hits and four runs, three earned, on Saturday. She walked three and struck out five.


LU shortstop Savana Guidry went 0-for-4 to snap her 13-game hitting streak … The Cardinals have turned a conference-leading 21 double plays this season … Meeuwsen’s 98 career RBIs are nine shy of the LU record of 107 held by Ashley McDowell.


The Cardinals host the Houston Cougars in a non-conference doubleheader at 4 p.m. Wednesday before heading to Conway, Arkansas, for a three-game Southland Conference series with Central Arkansas that starts Friday.

About I.C. Murrell

I.C. Murrell was promoted to editor of The News, effective Oct. 14, 2019. He previously served as sports editor since August 2015 and has won or shared eight first-place awards from state newspaper associations and corporations. He was born in Memphis, Tennessee, grew up mostly in Pine Bluff, Arkansas, and graduated from the University of Arkansas at Monticello.

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