Broncos Trade Run-Rule Games
Feb. 20, 2014
CATHEDRAL CITY, Calif. -
Boise State softball scored a 10-2 run-rule victory against Oregon State Thursday, to kick off the Mary Nutter Collegiate Classic in Cathedral City, Calif. The Broncos closed the day with a 9-1 loss in five innings against defending-national-champion No. 18/13 Oklahoma.
Devon Bridges returned to the Boise State lineup in a big way Thursday. Bridges was 2-for-2 with a two-run home run against the Beavers. Bridges missed the previous six games (eight total) with a back injury. She walked in her first plate appearance Thursday, and homered her next time up to give the Broncos (5-7) their first lead. Ashley Palmer drove in a career-high four runs in the win.
Two-Out Rallies Aplenty in Win Over Beavers
Oregon State starting pitcher Melanie Dembinski did not allow a hit through the first two innings and retired the first two batters of the third inning while holding a 2-0 lead. That’s when the Bronco offense woke up.
Jordan Kreiger started things with an infield single. Mackenzie Whyte drew a walk to keep the inning alive for Palmer and Bridges. The Bronco sluggers did not disappoint. Palmer cleared the bases with a double to tie the game. Then Bridges uncorked a home run to center for her first hit of the season to give the Broncos a 4-2 lead.
Patton returned to the circle and surrendered one hit in each of the next two innings, but did not allow a Beaver to advance past first base.
Boise State capitalized on two Oregon State errors in the next two innings to extend its lead and eventually end the game early.
Kayla Clausen walked in the third and Tara Glover reached on an error with one out. Kreiger’s second hit of the game scored Clausen. Whyte drew another walk—her seventh in four games—and Palmer kept her hot streak going with a two-run single up the middle.
The fifth inning saw the Broncos put two runners on quickly. Hailey Torrez came to the plate with the runners still aboard and two outs. Torrez lifted one to right field where it was misplayed, allowing both runs to score and Torrez to reach second. The lineup turned over again and Glover ripped an RBI double to put the finishing touches on the run-rule victory.
The Beavers put the first tally on the board with a run in the second inning and added to it with a two-out, solo home run in the third. Patton finished her five-inning complete game giving up just the two runs on seven hits and no walks. She struck out one.
The win is Boise State’s second all-time against a Pacific-12 Conference opponent, both coming this season (Utah, Feb. 7).
Grand Slams Give Sooners Cushion
McGill limited Oklahoma to four hits in three-and-two-thirds innings, but was stung by seven walks and two hit batters. She walked three batters in the first inning, including a two-out free pass to load the bases. The freshman worked the count full against the next batter, but the first hit of the game left the yard and put Oklahoma on top 4-0.
McGill worked into and out of trouble in the second. A walk was erased when the runner was called out for leaving early. A two-out double was followed by another base on balls, but a ground out ended the frame. The third inning was more of the same. She surrendered a leadoff single but retired the next two batters. Consecutive walks loaded the bases before a fly out to right ended the threat.
Despite Oklahoma’s lopsided advantage in base runners through three innings (11-0), the Broncos still trailed just 4-0 and had the top of the order coming to the plate.
Glover’s third blast of the season broke up the Sooners’ perfect game. Kreiger nearly made it back-to-back home runs when she put a charge into a ball to centerfield. Instead, Oklahoma center fielder Destinee Martinez crashed through the temporary fence to make the catch and rob the would-be home run. A ground out and strikeout ended the inning and Boise State had to settle for one run.
The bottom of the fourth started with an error. The next two batters flew out, but the error came back to haunt the Broncos. Two walks and a ball on the infield loaded the bases. After McGill’s seventh walk pushed in the fifth run of the game, Kenzie Cole emerged from the bullpen to try and limit the damage. The first batter Cole faced homered for Oklahoma’s second grand slam of the game. It gave the Sooners a 9-1 lead and pushed the game into run-rule territory.
Makenna Weir led off the fifth with a walk, but the next three Broncos struck out to end the game.
Just as the Broncos had done against Oregon State, all nine Oklahoma runs came with two outs.
Boise State returns to the diamond Friday, for a matchup with Pacific at 8:30 p.m. (PT).
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