March 7, 2009
OKLAHOMA CITY – The sixth-ranked University of Oklahoma softball team split a pair of decisions on Saturday at ASA Hall of Fame Stadium. The Sooners (17-5) got a sixth-inning solo home run from freshman Karolyne Long to drop No. 16 Northwestern (11-7), 4-3. In a rematch with eighth-ranked Tennessee, the Sooners led 5-0 early but were unable to hold on as the Lady Vols (20-2) rallied back to win 6-5 in eight innings.
In the day’s opening game, Oklahoma scored two runs in the bottom of the first inning when freshman Evan Sallis singled up the middle and was brought home on a two-run home run to right center by junior Amber Flores. The Sooners added another run in the bottom of fourth.
Sophomore Dani Dobbs singled to center field and pinch hitter Jeannie Douglas walked to put runners on first and second with one out. A single on the right side by Flores scored Dobbs to put OU up 3-0.
The Wildcats got on the board in the top half of the sixth inning. Ashley Lafever walked to lead off the inning and scored on a two-run home run to right center by pinch hitter Emily Haug. That was followed by a solo shot to right by Tammy Williams.
The Sooners entered the bottom of the sixth with the scored tied but regained the advantage when leadoff batter Long hit her first career home run over the left field wall.
Sallis and Flores each went 2-for-4 for Oklahoma. Both scored a run and Flores drove in three of OU’s runs. Senior Samantha Ricketts and Dobbs tallied one hit each. Long’s home run was her only hit of the day, a 1-for-3 showing.
Freshman Kirsten Allen picked up the win for the Sooners after relieving starter Allee Allen in the sixth inning. K. Allen pitched two innings and allowed just one walk. A. Allen went five innings, allowing all three of Northwestern’s earned runs.
In the second game, Oklahoma scored five runs in the top of the first inning to take a lead before Tennessee even came to the plate. Sallis singled up the middle to lead off the game and Flores was hit by a pitch to put two runners on base. Ricketts doubled down the right field line to score Sallis and later scored on a throwing error by the Lady Vols. Flores scored on a fielder’s choice by junior Lindsey Vandever. Vandever advanced to second on the throw home. Freshman Katie Norris singled up the middle to put runners at the corners for the Sooners. After the base runners advanced on a fielder’s choice, Dobbs drove in Vandever and Norris on a single up the middle.
Tennessee answered with two runs in the bottom half of the inning. Kelly Grieve scored on a Tiffany Huff double and Jessica Spigner doubled to right center to score Huff. The Lady Vols added another run in the third when Spigner’s double to left center scored Huff. Tennessee tacked on two runs in the bottom of the sixth to tie the game. Erin Webb hit a solo home run to center field and Danielle Pieroni singled to right field to score pinch runner Holly Baker.
After neither team put a run on the board in the seventh, the game went to the eighth inning. The Sooners were unable to put runs on the board in the top half, but the Lady Vols saw two runners aboard with no outs due to the international tiebreaker and an intentional walk. E. Webb then doubled to center field to score the winning run.
Sallis went 2-for-5, scoring one run. Flores was 1-for-3 with a run scored and a walk. Ricketts was 2-for-4 with a run scored and a run driven in. Norris also went 2-for-4 with one run scored. Sophomore Haley Anderson ended the game with a 2-for-3 performance.
K. Allen started for Oklahoma and re-entered the game in the sixth inning. She picked up the loss, falling to 6-3 on the year. Allen was responsible for three Tennessee runs, two of which were earned. A. Allen saw three innings of work, while freshman Samantha Bachman saw 1.2 innings of work.
Tennessee reliever Cat Hosfield (15-2) got the win, replacing starter Pieroni in the second inning. Hosfield went seven innings, giving up five hits but did not allow a run.
Oklahoma wraps up The Preview presented by Worth Sunday afternoon with a 1:30 p.m. CDT game against Northwestern. Fans planning to attend are reminded that daylight savings begins Sunday at 2 a.m. Clocks should be set forward one hour.