May 16, 2009
NORMAN, Okla. – Trailing 3-2 in the bottom of the seventh inning with two outs and two runners on base, Tulsa's pinch hitter Kelly Chapman registered a walk-off home run to defeat and end the University of Oklahoma softball team’s season by a 5-3 final Saturday evening at Marita Hynes field in Norman.
Chapman entered the contest batting a .163 clip this season at the plate.
“She had a chance to do something big and she stepped up and did it,” OU head coach Patty Gasso said. “We had some opportunities throughout this game to do things and score more runs and we couldn’t get it done. During the postseason you need to be able to step up and we just didn’t quite have it.”
The Sooners left 10 base runners stranded against the Golden Hurricane (40-16) and end the 2008-09 campaign with a 41-16 record.
Tulsa advances to face North Dakota State tomorrow in Norman, with the winner earning a spot in a super regional next weekend.
Jordan Kinard (13-6) earned the win for Tulsa and Allee Allen (14-5), who was relieved by Kirsten Allen in the third inning, picked up the loss for the Sooners.
OU was unable to compete with its ace pitcher, D.J. Mathis, because of a lingering injury that took her out of game one against North Dakota State Friday evening.
“I couldn’t use D.J. today and I wouldn’t have,” Gasso said. “I wouldn’t have tomorrow because in the ninth inning last night she took herself out and it was severe enough that her pitching career was over at that point.”
Oklahoma posted the game’s first run in the second inning off of a Chana’e Jones double to center field to score Lindsey Vandever who reached by walk. Tulsa quickly countered in the bottom of the second frame with a home run recorded by Brooke Smart to deadlock the game at one.
Tulsa grabbed its first lead of the game, 2-1, in the bottom of the third when Vanessa Vice recorded a single to score leadoff hitter Lauren Lindsay.
Oklahoma recaptured the lead with a two run fifth inning off RBI singles from Samantha Ricketts and Karolyne Long to lead 3-2.