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TU Softball Crushes Central Arkansas

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Jill Roye hit a grand slam, Haley Henshaw, Catherine Horner, and Cierra Hughes each hit two-run homers, and Tulsa turned a triple play in its 10-2 (5 inn.) win over Central Arkansas Wednesday evening at the Collins Family Softball Complex.

Roye's slam to right field put the 16th-ranked Golden Hurricane (34-3) on the board to start an eight-run third inning. Horner and Henshaw also homered in the third inning, and Hughes' shot ended the game in the bottom of the fifth.

TU's triple play was the first one turned in program history. With runners on first and second in the fourth inning, Maggie Withee caught a line drive at third and whipped the ball to Roye at first base, who then slung it over to Shelby Blanton on second base, beating both runners before they could retreat to the bag.

Junior Bailey Erwin (10-0) earned the complete-game victory for Tulsa. UCA starter Kylee Studioso (9-7) pitched 2.2 innings and took the loss. Ciara Clampitt tossed the final 1.1 innings for the Bears (17-22).

Each team had two hits after two frames, but neither was able to get past second base, taking a scoreless tie into the third inning.

Henshaw started the bottom of the third with a hard liner into right for a base hit. Jill Barrett reached on a fielding error at second base, and Blanton bunted safely for a hit. Following a pop out to right, Roye slammed her fourth homer of the season to give Tulsa a 4-0 lead. Two pitches earlier, the freshman first baseman had hammered a pitch just outside of the right field foul pole.

Following a groundout, Hughes bunted for a single and the Horner followed with her third home run of the season to make the score 6-0. Withee doubled to right center, and Henshaw came back around to launch her fourth home run of the year to extend the lead to 8-0.

In the top of the fifth, Central Arkansas center fielder Amy Gunnells singled and left fielder Hannah Stirton reached on an error, and third baseman Sam Forrest doubled to right center, scoring both baserunners to cut the lead to 8-2.

The Hurricane sent two batters to the plate in the bottom of the fifth. Sophomore designated player Jodi Edmiston drew a leadoff walk, and Hughes hit her opposite-field shot to left center to end the game. It was the third home run of the season for the senior center fielder.

Tulsa returns to conference play this weekend when it travels for a three-game C-USA series at UAB. The Hurricane and Blazers play a doubleheader Saturday beginning at 1 p.m. and single game at 1 p.m. Sunday.

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