Behind a shutout performance in the circle from Erin McDonald and a pair of timely runs in the fifth and sixth innings, Wichita State took game one of the weekend series with No. 25 Tulsa, 4-0, Friday night at the Collins Family Softball Complex.
Wichita State (29-21, 10-6) picked up its first win against a ranked opponent this season, while dropping Tulsa to 31-16 overall and 12-4 in conference play.
Bailee Nickerson extended her hitting streak to six games after going 2-for-3 with a double. Neleigh Herring was 1-for-3, but her one hit was a big one, being a two-run homer to break up a no-hitter and scoreless game in the fifth.
Erin McDonald shut down the Golden Hurricane lineup, pitching a complete game shutout. She allowed only one hit, while striking out five and walking two. McDonald registered her eighth complete game of the season and improving her record to 12-10 on the season.
Tulsa’s Kassidy Scott took the loss (8-5) after throwing 5.2 innings and allowing four runs on six hits. Mikayla Whitten collected the lone hit for Tulsa.
Through the first three innings neither team had produced a hit or a run. The only baserunners were via walk and hit by pitch for Tulsa. Ryleigh Buck finally broke up the no-hitter with a single up the middle in the top of the fourth, but she would be left at first.
In the top of the fifth, the Shockers got things going on a leadoff double to the right-center gap from Nickerson. After a sac bunt from Adi Reese and a Lauren Mills groundout, WSU had a runner on third with two outs, paving the way for Herring. Herring would deliver a two-run no-doubter to left field giving the Shockers a 2-0 lead.
Tulsa would threaten in the bottom half of the fifth, loading the bases with two outs, but McDonald left them loaded after inducing a flyout to center to end the inning.
Wichita State tacked on two more runs in the sixth on a sac fly from Laurie Derrico and an RBI double down the right field line from Adi Reese.
McDonald shut the door in the seventh, working around an error with two outs, but getting a pop up to end the game.
Wichita State and Tulsa meet for game two on Saturday at 2 p.m.