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Cowgirls get late win in high-scoring game, advance to regional final

OSU Softball vs. Tulsa 2019 Stillwater Regional Friday-56494.jpg

OSU center fielder Chyenne Factor celebrates after hitting a grand slam during the Oklahoma State vs. Tulsa softball game in the NCAA Stillwater Regional on Friday, May 17, 2019 at Cowgirl Stadium in Stillwater.

When her team needed her most, Chyenne Factor answered the call.

In a lineup that featured six underclassmen, Factor, a freshman on the Oklahoma State softball team, made her mark on Cowgirl's 13-10 win against Tulsa on Friday at Cowgirl Stadium.

The Cowgirls (41-14) took a 4-0 lead after stellar baserunning from Chelsea Alexander and Rylee Bayless.

OSU's problems started to show in the bottom of the third.

Starting pitcher Samantha Clakley gave up five runs capped off by a three-run home run to left, putting the Cowgirls behind on their home field.

Junior Logan Simunek replaced Show with two outs in the inning. However, the Cowgirls' pitching struggles did not stop there.

Strong wind gusts throughout the game made it a struggle for Simunek to locate pitches.

She walked four batters the next inning and gave up three runs to put Tulsa (36-19) ahead, 8-5.

Things changed for the Cowgirls in the sixth inning. Raquel Dominguez hit her third career home run to bring OSU within two.

OSU soon turned the game in its favor.

With the bases loaded, two outs and two strikes, Factor sent a ball over the left field wall to give OSU a 10-8 lead.

The Cowgirls are ranked within the top-10 in the nation in team home runs.

OSU added to its total against Tulsa. Factor, Dominguez, Sydney Pennington and Samantha Show all contributed to the team's total.

Show’s home run, however, was the difference maker. On May 5, Show broke the Cowgirls' single-season home run record, a record that was set last season by Madi Sue Montgomery. In Friday’s game, she added her most important one yet.

In the top of the seventh with the Cowgirls ahead one run, Show hit a three-run home run to left to give the Cowgirls a 13-9 lead.

In the bottom of the inning, Simunek finished the game to secure the win. Coach Kenny Gajewski said battling back from Simunek's fourth inning to come away with the win is the kind of performance he needs to continue building this program.

The Cowgirls play at 3 p.m. on Saturday for a trip to the super regionals.

“I need her for next year," Gajewski said. "I’m trying to build a program that’s sustainable and she's gotta learn how to fight through and just grind. She really hadn’t been hit hard she had done the damage to herself.”

sports.ed@ocolly.com