March 5, 2004
HOUSTON, Texas - The University of Houston win streak was snapped this evening at the Cougar Softball Complex by #5 Oklahoma, as the Sooners downed the Cougars, 5-2, in the opening game of a three-game series.
Houston falls to 18-7 overall, while OU improves to 17-4-1.
OU jumped on UH pitcher Jamie Falco (5-1) in the first inning, but scored without the benefit of a hit. Norrelle Dickson started the game by working a walk off Falco, and she was promptly sacrificed over by April Valdez. Christina Enea lifted a fly ball to UH's Brandi Clark, who misplayed the ball for a two-base error which scored Dickson. Falco escaped further damage by retiring the next two batters.
In the second Falco was chased by Sooner offense. OU'?s Kristen Vesely began the three-run inning with a single down the right field line. After a strikeout Vesely stole second, and then Kami Keiter walked. On Falco's wild pitch both runners moved up a base, and then Amber Spaulding loaded the bases with a walk off Falco. Dickson brought two runs home on a single to right field, which brought in Jenny Johnson from the UH bullpen.
Houston scraped back in the bottom of the frame, when Clark worked a one-out walk off Sooner starting pitcher Nicole Denes. Michelle Keith followed Clark's walk with a two-run blast to left center, her second home run of the season.
Oklahoma got one of those back off one quick swing by Heather Scaglione, who sent a Johnson fastball to dead center for a 5-2 OU lead. It was only the fifth earned run allowed by Johnson all season and the first since the Indiana game on February 21.
Houston would threaten twice as the game wore on, putting two runners on in the third and forcing Denes to the showers; however, OU's Jessica Johnson came in and coaxed a fielder's choice groundout by Arelis Ferreris to end the Cougar threat.
UH had one more chance in the sixth and loaded the bases in the process. After a popout Ferreris walked and advanced to second on a groundout by Clark. Keith singled sharply up the middle and advanced to second on the throw to the plate, putting runners in scoring position. Jessica Johnson was relieved by Keiter who walked pinch hitter Jeanie Davis to load the bases. Keiter squelched the Houston threat by inducing a groundout by Gonzalez.
Houston returns to the diamond tomorrow afternoon with a doubleheader with the Sooners beginning at 11 am.