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The Trend

The Student News Site of University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma

The Trend

The Student News Site of University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma

The Trend

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Luck of the Irish Favors the Stars

Left+fielder+Jordan+Ramsay+tracks+down+a+fly+ball+in+a+home+game+against+SAGU.+
Laura Barrios Bardi
Left fielder Jordan Ramsay tracks down a fly ball in a home game against SAGU.

After postponing the second double header of the weekend due to a drizzly Saturday afternoon, #2 USAO’s softball team (18-5, 9-3 SAC) faced off against the #5 Oklahoma City University (OCU) Stars (22-2, 11-1 SAC) once again Sunday, Mar. 17 at the Bill Smith Ballpark. In their first match up of the weekend, the teams split the games; however, the luck of the Irish favored one team Sunday afternoon.

Game 1:

Junior pitcher Sophie Williams started in the circle for the Drovers as usual in game one. One Star singled to left field before OCU’s first baseman Kamryn Garvie homered after a battle at the plate to give the Stars an early 2-0 lead. USAO looked to respond, but instead it was three up and three down.

In the second inning, the Stars recorded one hit, but no runners got past third base. OCU once again shut the first three Drover batters down. According to USAO’s Sports Information Director Tanner Shoemaker, Williams on average records two strikeouts per inning showcasing her efficiency; however Williams did not record her first strikeout until the eighth batter of the day, which means she more heavily relied on her defense to back her up.

Sophomore third baseman Taygan Graham was the fist base runner for the Drovers as she was walked. Next, senior centerfielder Macenzie Ruth pegged the pitcher in the leg with her hit to earn herself a single. In the same play, Ruth advanced to second as Graham caused a distraction at third. With two Drovers in scoring position, sophomore shortstop Malea McMurtrey hit a popup behind the infield to score both runners, this hit tied the game at 2-2.

Finding their momentum, USAO sent all three OCU batters back to their dugout before retaking their position in the batter’s box. The Drovers quickly earned two outs, but junior first baseman Sierra Selfridge got to first off an error by the right fielder. Selfridge’s pinch runner, freshman Taylor Cronic advanced to second on a wild pitch. However, the inning was cut short.

The fifth and sixth innings passed quickly and with little action. With the tense stalemate growing, both teams knew crucial plays were brewing. OCU quickly brought in two more runs with a single and two doubles. Sadly, the Drovers did not respond, which gave the Stars the 4-2 victory.

As a team, the Stars put up four runs off ten hits, and added four RBIs to the scoreboard. Their batters were patient at the plate as they recorded one walk and only two strikeouts. In comparison, USAO recorded two runs off three hits, walked three times, and struck out six. Interestingly, OCU left eight runners on the bases compared to USAO’s five.

McMurtrey was the only player who recorded RBIs and she had two. Sophomore Jadyn Goucher recorded one error at second base. Finally, Williams gave up four earned runs in her seven innings in the circle. She faced 33 batters and hit one of them. She had a strike percentage of almost 67%, in which she threw 75 strikes out of 112 pitches.

 

Game 2:

The Stars took a slightly different approach in game two as they started playing small ball early in the game; After getting two runners onto the bases, the Stars showered USAO in singles to earn their first run of the game. Once again, McMurtrey delivered as she softly hit a ball into no man’s land, and it got past the OCU left fielder to give McMurtrey a triple. Eventually, she came home on a pass ball to tie the game at 1-1.

Freshman catcher Leighanne Eaton threw runners out as they attempted to steal second for back-to-back outs. In the third inning, sophomore right fielder Kamryn James dropped a ball out of her glove, but the Drovers managed to get an out at second in the play. This left runners in the corners with two outs. The Stars loaded the bases after sophomore pitcher Abi Gregory walked a batter. In the next play, the ball was hit to Goucher who made an error as she tried to flip the ball to McMurtrey at second which allowed two runners to score, which pushed the score to 3-1.

The Drovers tried to rally in the bottom of the third as McMurtrey and Eaton found their way onto the bases; However, the next three Drovers got out consecutively. The Stars kept cruising in the fourth as they recorded three more runs off five hits. USAO still could not respond.

OCU kept their scoring train running as they piled on two more runs in the fifth off two hits and an error. In the bottom of the fourth, USAO recorded two hits and left two runners on the bases. Going into the sixth inning, OCU led 8-1.

In the top of the sixth, OCU’s Tara Hoehner knocked the ball over the wall for a one-run home run. USAO’s James responded in the bottom of the inning to avoid the mercy rule, as she tripled to right field. James reached home as an unearned run. The game ended in the seventh inning in a 9-2 victory, favoring the Stars.

The Stars scored nine runs off 16 hits while tallying ten RBIs. OCU walked five times and struck out three. The team also left nine batters on the bases. In comparison, USAO scored two runs off eight hits with one RBI. The Drovers earned zero walks and struck out three times. The team also left nine batters on the bases. The Drovers also recorded four errors compared to the single error by OCU.

McMurtrey and James both had a triple apiece, while Graham earned the lone RBI. The Stars earned three doubles and one home run.

USAO utilized three pitchers for the game. Gregory toed the rubber for 3.2 innings, where she allowed five runs on nine hits. She also struck out two and walked four. Freshman Gabby Toquothy pitched for 0.2 innings, where she allowed one run off two hits. Finally, freshman Jayden Anderson pitched the last three innings. Anderson allowed three runs off five hits, walked one and struck out one. Anderson saw the highest strike percentage with almost 64%; She was followed by Gregory with almost 55% and Toquothy with nearly 54%.

The Drovers will host Mid-America Christian University (MACU) Friday, Mar. 22 at 5 p.m. and 7 p.m. The teams will play again Saturday, Mar. 23 at Bill Smith Ballpark at noon and 2 p.m.

 

Emily Loughridge is a third-year communication major at the University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma.

Ray Thomas-Lapham
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About the Contributors
Emily Loughridge
Emily Loughridge, Editor-in-Chief
Emily is a fourth-year communication major from Union City. Emily is obtaining minors in psychology and liberal arts, as well. She has been on staff for The Trend since the fall of 2021 and loves working with the writers on ideas! Emily also works in the Sports Information Department on campus as the Student Assistant. When she isn't studying or working, Emily can normally be found watching Scrubs, Reba, or How I Met Your Mother and enjoying ice cream with her boyfriend.   Experience with The Trend: Editor-in-Chief: Dec. 2022 - present Managing Editor: May 2022 - Nov. 2022 Contributing Writer: Aug. 2021 - April 2022
Laura Barrios Bardi
Laura Barrios Bardi, Contributing Photographer
Laura Barrios Bardi a third-year art major from El Paso, TX. Laura currently works for USAO's Sports Information Department as a photographer. She is also a member of USAO's track and field team. Her hobbies include stargazing, spending time with friends, and working towards elevating her photography skills.   Experience with The Trend: Contributing Photographer: Nov. 2022 - present