MCKINNEY, Texas Playing its third straight doubleheader in as many days, the No. 10 Oklahoma softball team (9-1-1) took a 10-8 win over Indiana (0-1-1) in the first part of the twin bill and tied the Hoosiers, 11-11, in game two after both teams agreed to end the game after seven innings due to the weather conditions.
Temperatures dropped into the low 30’s with wind gusts of up to 20 miles per hour at the Ballfields at Craig Ranch in McKinney, Texas, home of the OU/Nike Classic after it was moved from its original site in Norman. With strong winds blowing out of centerfield, both games saw a multitude of home runs and hits by the Sooners and Hoosiers.
Oklahoma wasted no time getting on the board as Norrelle Dickson and Kristin Vesely each tallied a double to left field, which was followed by a Jamie Fox home run in the first inning to give the Sooners the early lead. Fox’s home run to left field marked the first of three on the day for the junior outfielder.
The Hoosiers responded with two home runs in the bottom of the first, including a lead-off home run by Mariangee Bogado and a two RBI homer by Lauren Hines.
It remained tied up at three apiece until the Sooners broke it open in the top of the fifth after another Fox three RBI home run to left field that followed consecutive singles by Vesely and Samantha Ricketts. The Sooners continued their offensive onslaught with a 2 RBI home run to centerfield by Nicole Denes which was followed by a Traci Dickenson home run to centerfield, the first of her Sooner career. Oklahoma ended the fifth inning with a 10-3 lead.
Indiana made it interesting in the bottom of the fifth. After two straight singles and a walk, Indiana had the bases loaded with no outs. The Hoosiers scored one run after Hines was hit by a pitch and scored two more after a Richards two RBI double to right field. Indiana wasn’t done either as it moved within two after another two RBI hit by the Hoosiers.
The Sooners escaped out of the inning after freshman D.J. Mathis came in for relief and recorded three straight outs as Oklahoma escaped the inning and went on to claim the victory.
Denes earned the win in a tough day of conditions for the pitchers in the circle. The senior improved to 3-0 on the year after allowing six runs on six hits in four innings of work. After Mathis came in for relief in the fifth inning, the freshman finished with zero runs on three hits and two strikeouts in the final three innings.
The second game was more of the same for the Sooners and Hoosiers as Indiana tallied 18 hits to OU’s nine in the seven-inning 11-11 tie game.
Ricketts led the Sooner offense with a 3-for-4 performance including a two RBI home run to left field and a two RBI single to right field.
Oklahoma owned a 6-2 lead after the second inning an extended its lead to 7-5 after Fox’s third home run of the night to leadoff the third inning. The Sooners added two more runs in the bottom of the fourth after Ricketts’ two RBI double, but Indiana kept hanging on.
Heading into the seventh and final inning, Oklahoma led 11-7 after adding two insurance runs off of Ricketts’ two RBI home run in the sixth. However, Indiana wouldn’t give up as it opened the final inning with three singles to give the Hoosiers base runners and within striking distance at 11-8.
With two outs and a two-strike count, IU’s Hines hammered her second home run of the day with a three RBI shot to centerfield to tie the game up
Oklahoma had one last shot in the bottom of the seventh but the Sooners went three up, three down to end the game in an 11-11 tie.
The Sooners will play their final game in of the OU/Nike Classic Saturday at 12:15 p.m. at the Ballfields at Craig Ranch in McKinney, Texas.