Staton two-hitter leads UTSA past Stephen F. Austin, 1-0
NACOGDOCHES — Junior Haylee Staton allowed just two hits and notched her fourth shutout of the season to help UTSA to a 1-0 victory at Stephen F. Austin on Friday.
Staton (14-7) faced just one hitter over the minimum and struck out six en route to her 14th victory of the campaign, which is the most by a Roadrunner since Amanda Nikolenko won 14 contests in 2007.
Senior Laura Little had a pair of hits and drove in the only run for the Roadrunners (22-26, 11-8 SLC).
Meanwhile, Angela White (6-15) struck out nine in a losing effort for the Ladyjacks (16-32, 6-13 SLC).
UTSA threatened in the opening inning by putting runners on first and second with just one out, but White fanned the next two hitters to end the inning. It was the beginning of four consecutive punchouts, as she struck out two more to start the second frame.
Elizabeth Arana reached on an error to lead off the second, but she quickly was erased when Cadie Weaver lined out to third baseman Nikki Goff, who threw over to first to complete the double play.
Arana’s infield single in the fifth broke up Staton’s no-hit bid, but she once again was retired on a double play.
The game remained scoreless until the top of the seventh.
Goff started the panel with a single up the middle to cap an 11-pitch at-bat. The Leander native fell behind 0-2 before working the count full and three consecutive foul balls followed before the base hit.
She moved up to second on freshman Courtney Buchman’s sacrifice bunt and 60 more feet on junior Samantha Beeson’s single through the left side. With two down, Little grounded a ball up the middle but Arana kept in the infield with a diving stop. However, Goff scored on the play and shortstop Linda Linares recovered the loose ball in time to throw out Beeson, who attempted to score from second after swiping the bag earlier in the inning.
Stephen F. Austin got its only other hit of the evening in the bottom of the inning, this time with two outs, but Staton coaxed a fly ball off the bat of Arana to end the game.
The Roadrunners will look to close the regular season on a winning note and complete the two-game sweep when the teams meet at 1 p.m. on Saturday.