UTSA to face former Southland Conference foes this week
SAN ANTONIO — UTSA will open a six-game road trip with three contests against former Southland Conference foes Sam Houston State and Stephen F. Austin this week. The Roadrunners and Bearkats will meet in a 2 p.m. doubleheader on Wednesday before a 3 p.m. tilt with the Ladyjacks the following day.
UTSA (11-12) is coming off a three-game sweep of Louisiana Tech in its inaugural Conference USA series last weekend. The Roadrunners’ pitching staff allowed just one earned run in 24 innings against the Lady Techsters and was buoyed by two wins from Kacy Freeze. Freeze went the distance in game two of the series before picking up a victory in the finale with 3.2 no-hit frames in relief. For the season, the lefty is 6-5 with a 3.80 ERA and is tied for the team lead with 55 strikeouts.
After being picked to finish third in the Southland, the Bearkats are 8-10 overall but have dropped three of their last four games. The squad also opened league play last weekend and saw visiting McNeese State take two of three in Huntsville. Tayler Gray leads the team with a .410 batting average to go along with four home runs and 15 RBIs. The Bearkats are hitting .301 as a team and have four regulars hitting better than .310. In the circle, Hayley Brooks has thrown the majority of the innings and is 3-5 with a 3.76 ERA.
Meanwhile, the Ladyjacks (11-12) were picked to finish ninth in the Southland and will enter Thursday’s game on a three-game winning streak after a sweep of Nicholls last weekend. Shalie Day leads the offense with a .362 batting average, four homers and 17 RBIs. Stephen F. Austin is batting .257 as a team, but its pitching staff is allowing opponents to hit .324. Carlie Thomas leads that group with a 7-6 mark, 2.53 ERA and 81 strikeouts.
UTSA leads the all-time series against Sam Houston State, 38-35, while it owns a 41-20 series lead against Stephen F. Austin. The Roadrunners are 17-17 al-time against the Bearkats in Huntsville and 14-12 versus the Ladyjacks in Nacogdoches.