Sooners Drop WCWS Opener to Arizona State

Thursday, June 2nd 2011, 11:48 pm
By: News 9

OKLAHOMA CITY – The Oklahoma softball team could not overcome a strong pitching performance and lost 3-1 to Arizona State in its first game of the Women's College World Series Thursday.

ASU starter Dallas Escobedo kept the Sooners off balance all night. The Sooners managed to get a runner past first base only twice, and one of those came in the fifth inning for their only run.

With a runner on first, Haley Nix delivered a two-out RBI double into the gap in right center field. OU never threatened to score again.

Meanwhile, Arizona State mustered just enough offense to win. The first two batters of the fourth inning reached on a walk and a hit batter, and they both advanced after a sacrifice bunt in the next at-bat. Mandy Urfer took advantage with a two-run single for the Sun Devils' first runs of the night.

After Nix's double cut the lead in half, ASU added one more insurance run with a solo home run by Katelyn Boyd to bring the lead back to two. Escobedo needed no more than that.

Escobedo finished with a complete game and gave up only five hits while striking out five to earn a win. Keilani Ricketts also pitched a complete game for OU and only allowed six hits, but her walks and hit batters cost her.

The WCWS is double elimination, so the Sooners remain alive. However, they will drop into the losers' bracket and now are one loss away from the end of their season. They will face the loser between Missouri and Florida at 1:30 p.m. Saturday.