TexAnns keep Zias reeling in South play

Freedom New Mexico

STEPHENVILLE, Texas — Tarleton State punched over the game’s only runs in the bottom of the fifth and the TexAnns kept Eastern New Mexico University struggling in Lone Star Conference South Division play Friday with a 2-0 victory.

Brooke Saulters (4-6) pitched a four-hit shutout for Tarleton (10-14, 2-2 South), which handed the Zias (13-15, 0-7) their seventh consecutive loss since division play began. In addition, ENMU has scored one run or less in five of those games, including three shutouts.

The Zias had more than one baserunner in an inning only once — the third, when losing pitcher Natalie Woodside (5-9) reached on an error leading off. Haley Hays was safe on a fielder’s choice grounder, with the throw to second too late to get Woodside, but Saulters then induced left fielder Alex Mayo Otis to ground into an inning-ending double play.

Woodside gave up four walks and two hits through four innings, but kept the TexAnns off the board in that time. In the fifth, Meagan Eldridge led off with an infield hit, took second on an infield out and scored on Kelli Gayle’s single through the right side.

Gayle stole second and moved third when Nicole Cone reached on an error first baseman Anna Hershkowitz. Gayle then scored on an error by third baseman Nikki Darnell.

The teams complete their three-game series with a noon (MDT) twin bill today.