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Sooners Win Back and Forth Game with Seminoles 5-4

The Sooners hosted the number 6 ranked Florida State Seminoles for the first time ever. Coming off a series loss to Oklahoma State this weekend the Seminoles are looking to rebound. It’s fantastic to get a top 10 matchup like this on a midweek game. I hope to see more games like this in the future. 

Alex Storako better known as “Rocko” started in the circle for the Sooners. She squared off against the Seminoles own super senior Kathryn Sandercock. Pounding the zone early Storako worked a clean top of the first. Sandercock who went 1-1 on the weekend against Oklahoma State, is the unquestioned ace of their staff. Another lineup change for the Sooners as the order was shuffled once again and the absence of Lyons. Haley Lee swapped with Tiare Jennings and Boone dropped back to her spot of years past in the 9 hole. After easily dispatching Coleman and Lee, Sandercock got Jennings to pop up but an error allowed her to reach and advance to 2nd. A short fly ball from Erickson to center clears the inning for the Noles. 

The varied pitches in the arsenal of Alex Storako was on display early as she started with a strikeout but then issued a 4 pitch walk. The defense on display once again as a ground ball turned into a double play and the Sooners jogged to the dugout. The first hit of the game, a single, belonged to Alyssa Brito who came into the game red hot. A fielder’s choice by Hansen retired Brito at 2nd. An athletic play by Sandercock, she fielded the chopper and threw out Lilio at first for the second out. First blood was drawn by the Sooners on a single to right by Torres scored Hansen. That was enough to chase Sandercock who was replaced by freshman Makenna Reid. You had to wonder if this was the strategy by the Noles coming in at first sign of trouble. The first pitch for Reid was yanked down the first base line for a double by Boone. A massive strikeout of Coleman to end the inning sent Reid sprinting to the dugout with a yell. 

The pinch hitting Kerr took a drop ball from Storako and deposited it in the right field bleachers to tie the game. An excellent bounce back getting the strikeout of Muffley for the second out of the inning. After a 2 out single for Mudge, Storako got a groundout to Lilio and end the inning. Haley Lee didn’t take kindly to losing the lead as she smashed a home run to left and tied her for the team lead with 5. The lineup changes seemed to work as Jennings went back to back with Lee for her 4th on the year. With her second hit of the night Alyssa Brito had a one out single to right. An oddity you don’t see often the Noles changed pitchers after Reid got to an 0-2 count on Hansen. Ali Dubois entered and picked up the at bat. The first offering of Dubois was popped to center and retired Hansen. 

The top of the 4th started with a single for Kale Harding. Coming back from a 3-0 count to Edenfield, three straight strikes retired the Seminole slugger. The single by a diving Brito brought 2 on and 1 out for Katie Dack. A hung drop ball was absolutely smashed by Dack to give the Seminoles a 4-3 lead. Another good comeback by Storako to get back to back strikeouts and end the inning. Leading off the 4th for the Sooners Riley Boone picked up her second hit of the night waiting on a hung changeup and put it right back up the middle. After nearly working a walk Jayda Coleman said I’ll do it myself and singled to bring up Lee with no one out. She smoked one off the wall in center scoring Boone to tie the game but Lee was caught too far off 2nd and was tagged out. Smacking one off the pitcher Dubois Jennings brought home Jennings for the lead once again. The way the Sooners were starting to sit back on Dubois a pitching change was coming regardless of the glance off her by the bat of Jennings. Allison Royalty entered with Jennings on first and one out to face Erickson. Jocelyn squared one but right at the center fielder who squeezed it for the second out. Staying red hot Brito hit her third single of the night sending Jennings to 3rd. Hansen popped out to right and end the threat. 

The Sooners made a pitching change of their own entering Jordy Bahl in the top of the 5th. A nice diving effort by Brito at 3rd but she could not corral it and a single for Muffley to start the 5th. A ground ball to Lilio might have been a double play but they started the runner but the play was made at first. Collecting her first strikeout Bahl blew it past Flaherty on a rise ball. A second strikeout with perfect usage of back to back dropballs from Bahl. Leading off the 5th Quincee Lilio drew a four pitch walk. Staying hot another single from Alynah Torres brought up Boone with 2 on. One would expect her to bunt in this situation. She squared, missed but the ball squirted out of the mitt of Edenfield and both runners advanced. A ball right at the first baseman, Keen touched the bag and threw home to get Lilio who ill-advisedly tried to scramble home on the play. A chopper back to Royalty retired Coleman and the Noles escape unscathed. 

Bahl had the good stuff tonight and the Noles didn’t know how to handle. Striking out the side with two swinging and one looking. After back to back ground outs to 3rd the Seminoles went back to Sandercock in the circle. Pinch Hitting for Erickson, Sophia Nugent smacked a leadoff double to right center. She was immediately lifted for a pinch runner Avery Hodge. A grounder that was an awkward play made for a close play at first and was challenged by the Sooners. The play was upheld and ended the inning. Jordy had it really working and started the 7th with a backwards K. Out number two Kerr stuck out her bat and hit a low liner but Coleman was positioned perfectly to collect it. A curious ground ball that Muffley did not run on and the Sooners closed out the win 5-4. 


Coach Gasso spoke on the atmosphere for the home crowd: “That felt like a super regional.” Gasso on having a back and forth game for a change: “It’s good to exchange blows like that, it was good to see their response.” She was also asked about gearing up to play a team of FSU caliber:  “Our coaching staff did a good job preparing our hitters for what was coming.” Gasso on Grace Lyons: “The hope is to see Grace on the field in some situations this weekend.” 

The Sooners return to the place of the WCWS this weekend with 5 games in the Hall of Fame Classic. 2 games against Weber State and Auburn with 1 against Northwestern. 


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