OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. – Iowa State (32-23, 7-11 Big 12) upset No. 8 Texas (41-14, 12-6 Big 12), 2-0, on Friday at the 2019 Big 12 Softball Championship before falling 17-2 to No. 14 Oklahoma State (39-14, 13-5 Big 12). The Cyclones will advance to play for third place on Saturday at USA Hall of Fame Softball Complex. Their opponent is yet to be determined.
Iowa State’s win over the eighth-ranked Longhorns was the program’s first victory over a top-10 team since March 9, 2013 (vs. No. 8 Oregon). It was also ISU’s first postseason win since May 8, 2009 (vs. Kansas – Big 12 Tournament). Senior Emma Hylen threw a complete game shutout and Talyn Lewis hit a two-run home run to propel the Cyclones past Texas.
Junior Sami Williams made history in game two of the day hitting a lead-off home run in the bottom of the first inning. It was Williams’ 15th home run of the season, breaking Iowa State’s single-season program record previously set by Tori Torrescano (2012 & 2013).
Iowa State 2, No. 8 Texas 0
Hylen was electric in game of one of the tournament, and was backed by an outstanding defensive effort. The senior hurler was forced to work her way out of trouble in the early going before settling in to a rhythm. Texas put the first two batters of the game aboard, and advanced them to second and third with just one out, but Hylen got out of the jam to preserve a 0-0 tie through one inning.
The game remained scoreless with Hylen and UT’s Brooke Bolinger dueling until Iowa State broke through in the top of the fourth inning. Sally Woolpert notched a one-out base hit up the middle, Iowa State’s first hit of the day. Lewis then stepped to the plate and launched a two-run bomb to center field, giving the Cyclones a 2-0 lead. It was Lewis’ second home run of the season.
Hylen was able to settle in after her offense gave her the 2-0 cushion, as the native of Roseville, Minn., surrendered just two more hits the rest of the way. The defense then provided what was perhaps the play of the day with UT threatening in the bottom of the fifth.
With Longhorn runners on second and third with one out, UT’s Janae Jefferson sent a blistering line drive down the left field line. Cyclone third baseman Logan Schaben made a spectacular play to snag the lined shot and apply a tag on Jaden Hoelker as she attempted to dive back into third base. Schaben’s unassisted double play ended the inning and stymied Texas’ comeback hopes.
The infield turned another double play in the home half of the seventh, and Hylen slammed the door shut to secure the 2-0 upset. Hylen went all 7.0 innings, allowing no runs on just five hits, for her 11th complete game of the season, and her second shutout.
No. 14 Oklahoma State 17, Iowa State 2
Williams kept the Cyclone momentum rolling early in game two, crushing a solo home run to center field in the bottom of the first inning. Williams home run was her single-season school record 15th of the season, and gave the Cyclones a 1-0 advantage through one inning of play.
However, Oklahoma State showed why they are among the nation’s most explosive offenses in the ensuing frame. The Cowgirls scored nine runs on seven hits, including five home runs in the top of the second inning to take control with a 9-1 lead.
Lewis stayed hot at the plate, ripping an RBI single up the middle in the bottom of the third inning, scoring Williams from second to make it a 9-2 deficit. However, the Cowgirls scored seven more runs in the top of the fourth and one more in the fifth to pull away for the run-rule victory.
The Cyclones will return to USA Softball Complex on Saturday to close out the tournament in the third-place game. First pitch is set for 1:30 p.m.