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Softball Wins Eighth Straight, Takes Series at Houston with 11-0 Run-Rule Victory

by Ryan Ladika

Houston, Texas – The longest active win streak in the Big 12 has hit eight.

Not unlike its performance in Friday evening’s series-opener, the UCF softball team produced another dominant all-around display in its latest victory, an 11-0 five-inning run-rule win over the Houston Cougars at Cougar Softball Stadium Saturday afternoon.

The winning effort, marking the Knights’ eighth straight win, also clinched the Black and Gold’s 10th in their last 11 games and pushed UCF back above .500 in conference play with a 9-8 record against Big 12 opponents.

The Knights earned their third straight Big 12 Conference series win, and their fourth of the season, as well, and in addition to their overall eight-game win streak representing the longest active streak among Big 12 programs, UCF’s five-game conference win streak is also the longest active streak in the Big 12.

UCF accomplished its 24th win of the season on the back of its third straight run-rule victory and ninth of the season, as well as its seventh game with double-digit runs.

Kaitlyn Felton, in her 12th start of the spring campaign, shouldered all five frames in the circle, marking her longest start since she spun her eight-inning complete-game against the Kansas Jayhawks March 9.

The right-hander fanned a single-game season-high seven Cougars in notching her team-leading ninth win of the season, yielding just four hits and a pair of walks that the Valrico, Florida, native tiptoed around throughout her afternoon start.

She stranded a leadoff walk in the bottom of the first inning by way of her first punchout of the afternoon and a pair of groundouts before tossing spotless second and third frames three more strikeouts.

Her fifth punchout came in the home half of the fourth, an inning that also saw a line drive unassisted double play turned by first baseman Shannon Doherty that aided Felton in stranding a leadoff walk.

The right-hander punctuated her Saturday effort with her sixth and seventh strikeouts in the bottom of the fifth, stranding the bases loaded in the process.

As right-hander Sarah Willis was in Friday’s series-opener, Felton was once again buoyed by a prolific display by her squad’s offense. Designated player Sona Halajian led the charge with a 2-for-2 showing that featured her third home run of the season and a two-run double, resulting a career-high five-RBI day for the San Anselmo, California, native.

Catcher Ashleigh Griffin notched her second three-hit game of the season to help lead the Knights’ offensive efforts as well, including her second home run of the series and third of the season, one shy of matching her single-season career-high of four she set in 2022.

Third baseman Sierra Humphreys also enjoyed a strong offensive performance, swatting a pair of doubles and driving in three scores in her two at-bats after being called upon by head coach Cindy Ball-Malone off the bench.

Humphreys tallied her fourth contest with at least three RBI in the winning effort, as well as her second such game in her last five.


UCF will go for its second consecutive Big 12 Conference series sweep in the series finale in Houston Sunday afternoon, with first pitch scheduled for 1 p.m. ET from Cougar Softball Stadium.


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