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No. 16 Softball Splits Doubleheader at North Texas

Senior Shelby Blanton hit a grand slam in the ninth inning to give the Golden Hurricane a 7-3 win in Game 1 at North Texas Saturday. The Mean Green won Game 2, 3-2.
Senior Shelby Blanton hit a grand slam in the ninth inning to give the Golden Hurricane a 7-3 win in Game 1 at North Texas Saturday. The Mean Green won Game 2, 3-2.
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May 3, 2014

Box Score  | Game 1 Box ScoreGet Acrobat Reader  | Game 2 Box ScoreGet Acrobat Reader

DENTON, Texas - Senior Shelby Blanton's grand slam in the top of the ninth gave the 16th-ranked Tulsa softball team a 7-3 win in Game 1 at North Texas Saturday afternoon, before it fell 3-2 in Game 2 at Lovelace Stadium.

With the split, the Golden Hurricane is now 47-6 overall and 19-3 in Conference USA, while the Mean Green is 29-21 overall and 13-9 in C-USA play. The Game 2 defeat stopped a 10-game win streak for the Hurricane.

Sophomore catcher Catherine Horner hit a solo home run in the top of the seventh to tie the opener at 3-3, while junior Bailey Erwin (13-2) earned the win after pitching six shutout innings. Junior left fielder Erica Sampson homered in the first inning, and sophomore designated player Jodi Edmiston doubled in a run. After Horner's homer, the score remained tied 3-3 until Blanton's first career grand slam in the ninth. Madison Thompson (2-6) pitched the final 3.0 innings in relief and took the loss for NT.

In Game 2, senior right fielder Haley Henshaw hit a solo home run, and sophomore Caitlin Sill (10-3) struck out three and allowed two earned runs on four hits as she went the distance in the 3-2 loss. Ashely Kirk (21-9) struck out five in the complete-game win for North Texas.

The series finale is at 1 p.m. Sunday.

Sampson's team-leading 10th home run of the season gave the Hurricane a 1-0 lead in the first inning of Game 1. North Texas tied it with a solo homer in the bottom of the second by right fielder Taylor Schoblocher, and took a 3-1 lead in the third on a two-run home run by shortstop Brooke Foster.

With TU trailing 3-2 and down to its last three outs, Horner led off the top of the seventh with her sixth long ball of the season to knot the score.

Sampson singled in the eighth inning as part of her 3-for-4 game, but the Hurricane broke through with four runs in the ninth. Horner started the frame with a base hit to right field, and after a sacrifice bunt, Henshaw singled to first base. Senior shortstop Jill Barrett then walked, leading to Blanton's grand slam - her third homer of the season.

Erwin entered to start the fourth inning for Tulsa in relief of Aimee Creger, who struck out six and allowed three hits and a pair of walks in a 3.0-inning no decision. Erwin retired the first seven batters she faced before a fielding error at short in the sixth inning. She only allowed a single and a walk in each of the seventh and eighth innings, before tossing a perfect ninth to seal the win.

Game 2: North Texas 3, Tulsa 2

North Texas scored a run in the second, fourth and sixth innings, while Tulsa scored single runs in the third and fifth innings, as the Mean Green took a 3-2 win in the second game of Saturday's doubleheader.

NT scored an unearned run in the second inning when third baseman Jordan Terry doubled, moved to third on a sacrifice bunt, and scored on an error at first base. Tulsa responded in the top of the third with a solo home run by Haley Henshaw - her seventh of the year. The Mean Green then took a 2-1 lead in the fourth frame on a homer by Taylor Schoblocher.

The Golden Hurricane again answered with a run in the top of the next inning. Jodi Edmiston drew a leadoff walk and scored when freshman third baseman Maggie Withee reached on a three-base error.

North Texas then took a 3-2 lead in the sixth when left fielder Jackie Miller doubled home center fielder Kat Strunk, who was hit by a pitch.

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 7, North Texas 3 (May 03, 2014 at Denton, Texas) (Game 1)
----------------------------------------------------------------------
Tulsa............... 100 100 104  -  7 11  1      (47-5, 19-2 C-USA)
North Texas......... 012 000 000  -  3  5  0      (28-21, 12-9 C-USA)
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Pitchers: Tulsa - Creger, Aimee; ERWIN, Bailey(4) and Horner, Catherine. North Texas - Poole;
Thompson(7) and Wade; Smith, S..
Win-ERWIN, Bailey(13-2)  Loss-Thompson(2-6)  T-2:49  A-682
HR TLS - Blanton, Shelby (3); Sampson, Erica (10); Horner, Catherine (6).
HR NT - Foster (14); Strunk (7).
Weather: Clear skies, sunny, 78 degrees
Poole faced 2 batters in the 7th.

North Texas 3, Tulsa 2 (May 03, 2014 at Denton, Texas) (Game 2) ---------------------------------------------------------------------- Tulsa............... 001 010 0 - 2 3 2 (47-6, 13-9 C-USA) North Texas......... 010 101 X - 3 4 1 (29-21, 19-3 C-USA) ---------------------------------------------------------------------- Pitchers: Tulsa - Sill, Caitlin and Sampson, Erica. North Texas - Kirk and Wade. Win-Kirk(21-9) Loss-SILL, Caitlin(10-3) T-2:10 A-672 HR TLS - Henshaw, Haley. HR NT - Schoblocher. Weather: 81 degrees, sunny, clear skies