No. 21 Texans end Winter Invitational by knocking off defending national champs

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CONROE – It’s hard to argue that Tarleton wasn’t taking part in the most elite season-opening tournament in all of NCAA Division II.

The tournament included eight of the top 25 teams in the nation, including No. 1 Augustana (SD) and No. 2 Texas A&M-Kingsville. The No. 21 Tarleton Texans stood toe-to-toe against the nation’s top competition and finished the weekend with a 4-2 record after defeating the No. 1 team in the nation and defending national champion Vikings Sunday afternoon.

It was Tarleton’s first win over the nation’s top-ranked team since March 31, 2017 when back-to-back shutouts from Haley Freyman delivered a series win over Angelo State in Stephenville.
Game 1: No. 2 Texas A&M-Kingsville 8, No. 21 Tarleton 0
Tarleton suffered a setback against No. 2 Texas A&M-Kingsville in the first game of Sunday’s tournament finale. The Texans fell 8-0 in six innings.

The Texans couldn’t push across any runs while managing only two base hits – one each from Hallie Saintignan and Morgan Ling – while the Javelinas struck for two in the third and three each in the fourth and sixth innings.
Game 2: No. 21 Tarleton 5, No. 1 Augustana 3
Tarleton’s resilience was on full display in the tournament finale as the Texans – not only rebounded from a game-one setback – bounced back from an early 3-0 deficit to defeat the No. 1 team in the land, Augustana, by a final score of 5-3.

Augie jumped out to three quick runs in the opening inning before Tarleton turned to All-American Jordan Withrow out of the bullpen. Withrow came on and dealt the Texans out of a jam and kept the Vikings off the board the rest of the way.

The 3-0 Augie lead lasted until the third inning when Tarleton loaded the bases with one away and Destiny Crumpley quickly unloaded them with a three-run triple to straight away center to tie the game.

After Withrow worked around a leadoff walk in the bottom of the third, Tarleton took a lead in the fourth when Kristen Zuehl led off the inning with a triple and later scored on an RBI fielder’s choice from Jessica Lee. Tarleton tacked on one more in the fifth when Shelby Carter led off the inning with a double, moved to third on a sacrifice from Morgan Ling and scored on a ground out from Morgan Medford to extend the lead to 5-3.

Meanwhile, Withrow continued to deal.

The senior shut down the Vikings with a 1-2-3 bottom of the fifth to keep the momentum totally in Tarleton’s favor. She stranded three runners on base over the next two innings to close the door on Augustana.

Withrow threw 6.2 innings, allowing no runs on three hits while striking out eight.

Offensively, Destiny Crumpley led the way with a three-RBI triple for her lone hit of the day. Lee and Saintignan each had two hits while Capell, Crumpley, Carter, Ling and Zuehl had one hit each in the nine-hit effort.

Tarleton will return to action next weekend in Arkadelphia, Arkansas against tournament-host Henderson State Saturday at 12 p.m.


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