Junior right-hander Randee Crockett tossed a three-hitter while freshman shortstop Shelby Simmons hit the game-tying triple and scored the game-winning run in the fifth inning as East Central University salvaged a Lone Star Conference North softball split by edging Cameron 2-1 in the second game of a doubleheader on Tuesday.
Cameron won the first game by a 5-3 count as the Lady Tigers surrendered four unearned runs.
ECU went to 30-17 overall and 9-11 in the LSC North with the split while Cameron moved to 21-25 and 8-12. The Lady Tigers stayed one game ahead of Cameron in the race for a berth in the LSC Postseason Tournament in Durant.
The two teams will face each other again on Saturday at 2 p.m. in Lawton to close out the regular season.
ECU 2, Cameron 1
Crockett (13-3) worked all seven innings for the victory and allowed only a solo homer to Jessica Orr in the third inning. Crockett struck out three and walked only two in one of her better pitching efforts of the season.
Trailing 1-0, the Lady Tigers staged a two-out rally in the fifth as Nicole Sanchez singled and advanced to second as the right fielder booted the ball. Then Simmons followed with a triple to left to score Sanchez and Simmons raced home off an error on the same play to provide the final 2-1 margin.
Cameron hurler Carrie Harvey (12-13) scattered five hits in six complete innings. She struck out eight batters and walked just one.
Desireé Nordie was the only multiple hitter of the game, going 2-for-2 from the plate. Emily Kennemer had ECU’s only other hit of the contest.
Cameron 5, ECU 3
Junior right-hander Wanda Malone (13-10) was the hard-luck loser in the opener as only one of the five Aggie runs were earned in the game.
Outside of the first run of the game in the opening inning, the remaining Cameron runs — one more in the first, two in the third and one in the seventh — were unearned.
Malone scattered eight hits, walked only one and struck out five in going the seven-inning distance.
Cameron hurler Ashton McBride (9-11) allowed all three earned runs off nine hits with one walk and a strikeout.
The Lady Tigers trailed 4-0 before finally getting on the board in the fifth when Cassandra Nordie and senior Hillary Hughes, playing in her final home doubleheader, hit back-to-back, one-out singles. Courtney Gaines then doubled to left, scoring Cassandra Nordie to make it 4-1.
ECU then made it interesting in the sixth, pulling to with 4-3, on a two-out, two-run single to center by Hughes.
But Cameron picked up an unearned tally in the seventh to get the two-run cushion and cruise from there.
Hughes finished 2-for-3 from the plate with her two RBIs and Simmons was 2-for-4.
Amanda Karth collected three hits, including a double and RBI for the Aggies. Drew Wright and Callie Schlatter, Cameron’s top two hitters in the lineup, collected two hits apiece.