April 21, 2012
NORMAN, Okla. – Ashley Fleming hit her second game-tying home run in as many days and the No. 10 Missouri Tigers pulled out an extra inning win to even the series with the No. 5 Oklahoma Sooners on Saturday afternoon. The Tigers improve their record to 34-9 on the season and 11-6 in the league, while dropping the Sooners to 37-7 and 12-4.
No. 10 Mizzou 4, No. 5 Oklahoma 2 (8)
|W - Thomas (18-6)||6.0||3||2||1||3||4|
|L - Ricketts (22-6)||3.0||1||2||2||2||3|
|MU - Fleming||4||1||2||2||0||1||0|
|MU - Roth||4||0||1||1||0||0||0|
The Sooners extended their lead in the bottom of the third with a leadoff home run by freshman Lauren Chamberlain. The homer was Chamberlain’s 20th of the season and put Oklahoma ahead by a 2-0 margin.
Missouri put base runners on in each of the first five innings but couldn’t plate any runs. In the first, Mackenzie Sykes took a leadoff walk and Ashley Fleming singled her to second, but a 4-3 double play ended the inning. Nicole Hudson singled to start the second advanced to second on a ground out but two pop outs ended the frame.
In the third, Sykes singled with one down but she was left stranded. Angela Randazzo legged out an infield single in the fourth and moved to second on a throwing error on the play, but a two out ground out left her in scoring position. Lindsey Muller singled to lead off the fifth inning, but pinch runner Brianna Corwin was thrown out trying to steal.
The Tigers finally struck in the sixth inning, and once again it was Fleming doing the damage. After Jenna Marston took a walk to start the inning, her 36th of the season, Fleming belted her second game-tying home run in as many days. The blast was her 11th of the year and knotted the game at 2-2.
After the home run, the Sooners brought in Keilani Ricketts and the Tigers re-entered Thomas in the circle. The two battled again, as the teams went to extra innings for the second day in a row.
This time, the Tigers were able to strike in the top of the eighth inning, scoring two runs on one hit to take a 4-2 lead. Sykes and Marston took two straight walks to start the inning, and a ground out by Fleming moved them into scoring position. Kelsea Roth then roped a base hit through the right side to score Sykes and give the Tigers their first lead of the weekend. Nicole Hudson then hit a short pop fly to shallow center field to score Marston, who just got her hand in ahead of the tag, and make it 4-2.
Thomas set the Sooners down 1-2-3 in the bottom of the inning and picked up her 18th win of the season. She picked six innings, allowing two runs – one earned – on three hits while striking out four. Bailey Erwin pitched two solid innings of relief, issuing just one walk and striking out one. Oklahoma starter Michelle Gascoigne went 5.0 innings, giving up two runs on six hits. Ricketts took the loss in three innings of relief, giving up two runs on one hit, striking out three and walking two.
Missouri looks to win the series tomorrow in the rubber match, beginning at 2:30 p.m. CT. The game will be aired live on ESPN and ESPN3.com. For more information, stay tuned to mutigers.com.
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