Deja Vu: OU Beats Houston in Extras Again

Karl Anderson
By Karl Anderson
Assistant Director of Communications
FEBRUARY 18, 2017
4/6 Oklahoma
Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 R H E
OU 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 1 2 7 0
UH 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 1 4 1
W - Lopez (1-0) 3.0 0 0 0 2 2
L - Melancon (1-2) 8.0 7 2 1 0 5
S - N/A - - - - - -
Individual Leaders
OU - Clifton 4 0 1 1 0 0
UH - Barker 3 0 1 1 0 0
Game Notes
Oklahoma is now 8-1 all-time against Houston, including six straight wins in the series ... Oklahoma has won four straight games overall ... the Sooners played in their second straight extra-inning game for the first time since April, 20-21 of 2012 against Missouri ... the last time OU won consecutive games that went to extra innings came on March 12, 2004 against New Mexico ... freshman Mariah Lopez recorded the first win of her career ... sophomore Caleigh Clifton singled in the eighth and is the only Sooner to reach base in every game this year ... freshman Nicole Mendes started at DP, her first career start

HOUSTON, Texas – After battling to extra innings in the first game of a doubleheader, No. 4/6 Oklahoma and Houston did it again in the second half of the twinbill Saturday at the Houston Classic. OU (6-2) emerged victorious in both contests, winning 7-5 in eight in game one and 2-1 in eight in game two against the Cougars (4-6).

The Sooners played in a second straight extra-inning game for the first time since April, 20-21 of 2012 against Missouri. Additionally, the last time OU won consecutive games that went to extra innings came on March 12, 2004 against New Mexico.

Tied 1-1 after seven innings, junior Kelsey Arnold started the eighth inning on second base with the international tiebreaker rule in place. After a flyout, sophomore Caleigh Clifton singled up the middle on an 0-2 pitch to drive home Arnold. Clifton is the only Sooner to reach safely in every game this season.

In the bottom of the inning, Sarah Barker started on second base for Houston but could not advance any further. OU relief pitcher Mariah Lopez caught a line drive for the first out before Clifton caught a line drive of her own. On a 2-2 pitch, Lopez got Elise LeBeouf to strike out swinging to end the game.

Lopez entered the game in the sixth inning and threw the final 3.0 innings to earn the first win of her career. She struck out two and walked two but did not allow a hit or run.

Like in the day’s earlier matchup, the Sooners had to rally to get to extras.

Houston led 1-0 after three innings, but OU quickly tied it up in the fourth.

Cougars catcher Brooke Vannoy tripled to lead off the third and No. 9 hitter Sarah Barker hit a line drive off the glove of OU third baseman Sydney Romero to give Houston the lead.

In the fourth, Romero got her revenge as she led off with a single. Two batters later, sophomore Fale Aviu doubled to left center to put a pair in scoring position. Freshman Alissa Dalton then tied the game up at 1-1 with a double to right center, driving in Romero.

A pitchers’ duel commenced over the next three innings as neither team was able to break the deadlock.

Houston had a chance in the fifth, getting a runner to third with two outs. Maya Thomas then put down a bunt just in front of home plate, but Romero charged and flipped it home with her bare hand as junior catcher Lea Wodach applied the tag to Vannoy to keep the game tied.

Lopez entered the game in the sixth in relief of OU starter Paige Lowary and issued a walk. The defense picked up her though by turning a 5-4-3 double play to quell the threat.

Lowary threw the first 5.0 innings for Oklahoma. She struck out two and walked one while giving up one run on four hits.

Oklahoma returns to action next weekend at the Mary Nutter Collegiate Classic in Palm Springs, Calif. The Sooners open Thursday with games against Louisville and No. 15/14 Tennessee before facing North Carolina State and No. 6/5 UCLA on Friday. A single contest against Notre Dame Saturday wraps up the weekend.



Sooner Sports Properties, LLC, is the multimedia rights holder for athletics at the University of Oklahoma.
Sooner Sports Properties is a joint venture of Learfield Communications and Tyler Media, LLC.


Sooner Sports Powered by FOX Sports is a multi-platform network that provides distribution of 1,000+ hours of Sooner sports programming annually on a variety of FOX Sports outlets, including FOX Sports Oklahoma, FOX Sports Southwest, and FOX College Sports.