A two-out single by Catherine Horner scored pinch runner Emma Horton from second, and the 18th-ranked Tulsa Golden Hurricane defeated Oklahoma State 1-0 Wednesday evening in non-conference softball action.
The game was a battle of pitching through the first five innings as OSU's Simone Freeman and TU's Aimee Creger combined for 15 strikeouts to that point. Julie Kernen doubled off the wall in centerfield with one out in the top of the fifth, and was replaced by Horton. After a flyout to left by Cierra Hughes, Horner hit a base hit up the middle to score the only run of the game.
Both teams had scoring opportunities throughout the contest. Tulsa had runners on first and second with one out in the second, but Freeman retired the next two batters. The Cowgirls responded in the bottom of the inning after Tiffany Mikkelson led off with a walk, and one out later, Shianne Hughes, younger sister of TU's Cierra, beat out a bunt and both advanced on an error. Despite runners on second and third with one out, Creger struck out the next two batters to end the threat.
The Golden Hurricane (42-5) stranded one runner in the third and two more in the fourth, while the Cowgirls left one on in each of those innings as well. After Tulsa scored the run in the fifth, OSU had one more opportunity in the bottom of the seventh to tie the game. Tarah Ettinger, the Cowgirls' leading home run hitter, hit a deep drive to straightaway center, but Cierra Hughes made a nice play against the wall to make the catch. Shianne Hughes followed with a slap-bunt single that she just beat out, giving OSU one last opportunity to plate a run. However, the attempt was thwarted as Gessenia DeLaCruz battled but eventually popped up to the shortstop, and pinch hitter Madison Ellis struck out to end the game.
Oklahoma State (24-21) will travel to Austin, Texas, this weekend to resume Big 12 Conference action as they face the Texas Longhorns in a three-game series. The first game is scheduled for 4:30 pm on Friday, with subsequent games set for 4 pm on Saturday and 11:30 am on Sunday.