UAB sweeps UTEP in softball


Birmingham, AL (WIAT)—Behind 13 strikeouts from junior pitcher Leigh Streetman and three RBI from junior designated hitter Kristen McGrath, UAB executed its fourth series sweep in Conference USA action with a 4-1 win over UTEP on Sunday at the UAB Softball Field.

UAB improves to 29-11 on the year with a 16-2 mark in C-USA action, which leads the league. UTEP falls 12-28 overall with a 1-16 record in league play.

With the win, the Blazers have won 11-straight games at home, breaking the 10-game home win streak originally set during the 2002 season.

“I’m very proud of the way we came out and scored a couple early, which took a little bit of pressure off of Leigh (Streetman),” head coach Marla Townsend said. “I thought Leigh pitched an outstanding game. She did an excellent job of hitting her spots and Kristen came up huge with three RBI, and was then able to draw a big walk later in the game.”

The Blazers got on the board in the first inning, and are 12-0 on the year when doing so, as K. McGrath hit a 2-RBI single to right center after sophomore Heather Pearson and senior Whitney Fletcher reached on back-to-back walks, to put UAB up, 2-0.

In the bottom of the fourth frame, K. McGrath led things off by hitting her 10th home run of the season over the fence in left center field to extend UAB’s lead to 3-0.

The Tampa, Fla., native now has 29 home runs in her career, and is three away from tying former Blazer Mandy Lowman’s (2009-12) school record of 32 career home runs.

Later in the fourth, junior first baseman Megan McGrath reached on a single to right, and was scored on a sacrifice fly to center field by sophomore Amy Dennis to put the Blazers up, 4-0.

UTEP scored its lone run of the game in the top of the seventh, as their leadoff hitter Alanna Leasau reached on a double to center field, and she was scored on a two-out single by Miner pitcher Danielle Pearson.

“UTEP has taken a couple big games from us on Sunday in the past, so we knew that they weren’t going to lay down,” Townsend said. “I’m just proud of the way we battled.”

Streetman (10-6) threw her seventh complete game of the year as she struck out at least one batter in each inning save the sixth for a total of 13, which ties her career high. The Hueytown, Ala., native also struck out 13 in the no-hit win over Southern Miss on March 29.

For the series, freshman shortstop Caitlin Attfield lead the team with five hits and a .625 batting average, while K. McGrath hit two home runs, posted five RBI, and slugged 1.111.

Up next, UAB remains at home to host Alabama State on Tuesday at 3 p.m. CT. Thursday, the Blazers will trek to Kennesaw State for a doubleheader that is set to start at 3 p.m. CT.

(Courtesy: UAB Athletics)

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