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Eberle strikes out eight, Cowgirls shutout Bears in game one of doubleheader

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O'C Cowgirl Softball v. Iowa State-17.jpg

OSU senior Carrie Eberle winds up during Saturday's game of the Oklahoma State vs. Iowa State softball series on April 3, 2021 at Cowgirl Stadium in Stillwater.

Zadie LaValley watched as Carrie Eberle’s fastball passed her.

LaValley didn’t swing. She watched. The fastball struck out LaValley, the final out of the game. It was another complete game shutout for Eberle.

On Saturday, the Oklahoma State Cowgirls defeated the Baylor Bears 4-0 in Stillwater. OSU improves to 33-5 overall, 9-1 in the Big 12.

Baylor drops to 21-10, 3-1.

Eberle pitched her sixth shutout and twelfth complete game Saturday. She threw 118 pitches, allowing three hits, two walks and eight strikeouts. Eberle’s pitching record improves to 15-1.

“She’s an ace in the circle,” Chelsea Alexander said. “It’s fun to play behind her.”

Baylor’s Gia Rodoni threw five innings, notching two strikeouts, allowing 12 hits and four earned runs. Maren Judisch entered in relief, getting two strikeouts and allowing no hits in one inning.

OSU’s offense was creative. Kiley Naomi and Alexander reached base on bunts. After bunting, Alexander reached third base on a Chyenne Factor single that scored Karli Petty to give OSU a 3-0 lead.

Alexander stole home after Alysen Febrey hit a pop-up to the catcher, who tried to throw out Factor at first base. Stealing home gave OSU a 4-0 lead.

“As a base runner I’m always looking to score,” Alexander said. “As soon as I saw that ball at first, I knew that I could get there easily. I just took off as soon as I saw that throw.”

Hayley Busby hit home run No. 13 Saturday. A deep shot over the left field wall in the third inning gave OSU a 2-0 lead.

Febrey finished 1-4, her hit being an RBI double. Naomi scored from second base on Febrey’s hit in the first inning to give OSU a 1-0 lead.

OSU had 12 hits, loading the bases twice and failing to score.

“We’re starting to string some good at-bats together,” coach Kenny Gajewski said. “We’re starting to play offense like we think that we can. That’s who I think we are.”

Defensively, OSU made several plays. Naomi, playing shortstop, caught a line drive from LaValley, throwing back to first base for a double play. Factor made a diving catch in centerfield in the sixth inning.

“(Offense and defense) reflect on each other,” Naomi said. “When you’re doing good you just feel good all around when you’re on defense or offense. You have that good energy going inside and you know everybody is with you.”