NORMAN, Okla. – For the first time in their respective careers, sophomores Whitney Ellis and Kelsey Stevens have received weekly honors from the Big 12. Ellis was named the co-Big 12 Player of the Week, while Stevens was chosen as the Big 12 Pitcher of the Week after leading the Sooners to a 4-0 mark last week, the conference announced Tuesday.
Ellis was a team-best 9-13 (.692) with three home runs, 12 RBI, five runs scored and two stolen bases. She got on-base at a .714 clip and slugged 1.462. Ellis led the Sooner in average (.692), hits (9), doubles (1), RBI (12), OBP (.714) and stolen bases (2).
Against Louisiana Tech on Tuesday, Ellis had the first multi-homer game of her career as she hit a three-run homer in the first and a walk-off, two-run shot in the bottom of the sixth. She finished 3-4 at the plate, establishing a career high in hits, runs scored (3), RBI (5) and home runs (2).
Versus Liberty on Friday, Ellis hit a pair of RBI singles and added a run-scoring double to match her career high with three hits. In another run-rule win over Western Illinois Friday, Ellis hit a solo home run in the bottom of the second, drew a bases-loaded walk in the third, and then hit a two-run walkoff single in the bottom of the sixth.
Stevens won all three of her starts last week for the Sooners in complete-game efforts, striking out 27 batters in 19.0 innings of work.
After back-to-back eight-strikeout performances against Louisiana Tech and Western Illinois, Stevens was at her best Sunday in a 1-0, shutout win over No. 20/21 Tulsa.
Stevens, who has gotten the start in six of OU’s seven matchups against ranked opponents this year, established a season high with 11 strikeouts, one off her career-best mark of 12, which she has done twice. She gave up two hits in 23 at-bats (.087) to limit a Golden Hurricane squad that came in with a .336 team batting average. Tulsa, which didn’t get its first hit until the sixth inning, loaded the bases later in the sixth with two outs, but Stevens finished off a 12-pitch at-bat with a strikeout.
This is the second time this season that an OU player has earned conference accolades as senior Destinee Martinez was named Big 12 Player of the Week on Feb. 25.
No. 19/13 Oklahoma (17-6) takes to the road this weekend with a three-game series at No. 23/24 Louisiana-Lafayette (15-5-1). Friday’s game starts at 6 p.m., while Saturday’s doubleheader, which can be seen on ESPN3.com, is scheduled for a 4 p.m. start.