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Creger, Balanced Offense Leads No. 25 Softball to 8-2 Win at Oklahoma State

Junior Aimee Creger struck out 12 batters to lead the Golden Hurricane to an 8-2 win at Oklahoma State Wednesday.
Junior Aimee Creger struck out 12 batters to lead the Golden Hurricane to an 8-2 win at Oklahoma State Wednesday.
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April 24, 2013

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STILLWATER, Okla. - Aimee Creger struck out 12 batters, and a balanced offensive attack pounded 11 hits as Tulsa defeated Oklahoma State, 8-2, Wednesday evening at Cowgirl Softball Stadium.

Eight different players had a hit and seven different players drove in runs for the Golden Hurricane (34-13-1), which recorded its largest-ever margin of victory over the Cowgirls. Creger (19-5) allowed two earned runs on two hits and two walks, and took a no-hitter into the fifth inning. Kat Espinosa (15-15) went the distance in the loss for OSU (26-22).

Tulsa scored four runs in the third inning, and two each in the sixth and seventh frames, while Oklahoma State scored its two runs in the fifth inning. Haley Henshaw drove in two runs and scored twice, Catherine Horner was 2-for-3 with an RBI and a run scored, and Julie Kernen homered and scored twice for the Hurricane.

"After a couple of weekends of scuffling a little bit at the plate, I think the most positive thing to come out of the game was how many quality at-bats we had, how many balls we centered up," Tulsa Head Coach John Bargfeldt said. "We had production all the way through the lineup, had great at-bats all the way through the lineup. I can't say enough about Aimee's performance. She only gave up two hits, kept them off balance and pitched extremely well. We played mistake-free defense as well. It was just a quality effort all the way around."

Caitlin Everett got things started in the third with a two-out double down the left field line. Cobb followed with a liner into center field that scored Everett, and Kernen walked. Henshaw roped a triple just inside the foul line and into the right field corner, scoring Cobb and Kernen. aHorner then sent a base hit through the right side, plating Henshaw to make the score 4-0.

Creger held Oklahoma State hitless until the bottom of the fifth inning, allowing just two baserunners on a pair of walks. Erika Campbell lined a base hit to center and Amy Graham followed with a home run to left to reduce the lead to 4-2.

The Golden Hurricane got the runs back in the top of the sixth to make the score 6-2. Horner led off with her second single of the game and Creger followed with a pop base hit just beyond the first base bag, and both runners moved up a base when the second baseman bobbled the ball. Horner then scored on Cassidy Bowen's one-out single through the left side. Emma Horton, who pinch ran for Creger, scored when Everett reached on an error at short.

Kernen hit her sixth home run of the season, a one-out shot to dead center field to increase the lead to 7-2. Henshaw and Horner drew back-to-back walks, and following a fielder's choice, Henshaw crossed the plate on a Hughes single up the middle to make the score 8-2.

Creger retired the final nine batters she faced, following the home run. She struck out seven of those nine batters, including all three in the seventh inning.

The Golden Hurricane returns to Conference USA play this weekend when it travels to El Paso to take on UTEP in a three-game series. The Hurricane and Miners play a doubleheader beginning at 3 p.m. CT Saturday, and a single game at 1 p.m. CT Sunday.

Follow Tulsa Athletics on Twitter at www.Twitter.com/TulsaHurricane and Facebook at www.facebook.com/TulsaHurricane. Follow Tulsa Softball on Twitter at www.Twitter.com/TulsaSoftball and Facebook at www.facebook.com/TulsaWSoftball.

Tulsa 8, Oklahoma State 2 (Apr 24, 2013 at Tulsa, Okla.)
Tulsa............... 004 002 2 -  8 11  0      (34-13-1)
Oklahoma State...... 000 020 0 -  2  2  3      (26-22)
Pitchers: Tulsa - Creger, Aimee and Bowen, Cassidy. Oklahoma State - Espinosa, Kat and
Brown, Tamara.
Win-CREGER, Aimee(19-5)  Loss-Espinosa, Kat(15-15)  T-1:50  A-209
HR TLS - Kernen, Julie.
HR OSU - Graham, Amy.
Weather: 55 Sunny, Wind SSE @ 4 mph