Lowary Fires First Shutout as a Sooner

Karl Anderson
By Karl Anderson
Assistant Director of Communications
9/10 Oklahoma

LOS ANGELES, Calif. – No. 9/10 Oklahoma (24-7) wrapped up a week-long trip to California with a 6-0 win over DePaul (12-10) at the LMU Tournament in Los Angeles as junior Paige Lowary threw her first shutout in an Oklahoma uniform.

For Lowary, who spent her first two seasons at Missouri, it was the fifth shutout of her career as she allowed just two hits with no walks and struck out two to run her record to 7-1 on the season. She retired 16 straight batters at one point between the first and sixth innings, and a runner never got past second base over the entire game.

Of the 21 outs registered by Lowary, 14 came via groundout. It was the highest amount by a single OU pitcher this year and also the most the team had generated.

The Sooners recorded eight hits in the win, including two each from freshman Nicole Mendes and sophomore Fale Aviu. Senior Macey Hatfield and sophomore Shay Knighten each drove in two runs, while sophomore Sydney Romero was 1-4 with a run scored to extend her career-best hitting streak to 14 games.

After three scoreless innings, the Sooners broke through in the fourth.

Aviu started with a single through the right side and took second on a wild pitch. Knighten batted next and hit a grounder to short, but Aviu was able to distract the fielder enough to prevent a throw toward Knighten at first. Junior Nicole Pendley walked to fill the bases and Hatfield put OU on top with a two-run double to left center.

OU picked up four more runs in the fifth.

Mendes put down a sacrifice bunt to kick things off before sophomore Caleigh Clifton reached on an error by the DePaul shortstop. A single up the middle by Romero filled the bases, while Aviu made it 3-0 with an RBI single up the middle. Knighten followed Aviu’s single with one of her own, plating Romero and Clifton. A third straight RBI single, this time from Pendley, got the lead to 6-0 for OU.

Oklahoma returns home from its seven-game trip to California, on which it went 4-3, next weekend with the College Preview Tournament. OU hosts Mississippi State Friday at 6 p.m. before taking on Louisiana Tech and UAB Saturday in Oklahoma City at ASA Hall of Fame Stadium. OU meets UAB again Sunday in Norman to wrap up the weekend.