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Oklahoma Sooners power past Duke 9-1 in Women’s College World Series opener

The Duke Blue Devils came into their opening game of the Women's College World Series against the Oklahoma Sooners as the No. 3 team in RPI. And the Oklahoma Sooners made quick work of the ACC Champions, earning a 9-1 run-rule win.

Duke actually struck first with a lead-off home run in the second inning from Francesca Frelick to put the Blue Devils up 1-0. The Sooners threatened in the bottom of the second, but even with runners at the corners and just one out, couldn’t push a run across the plate against starter Cassidy Curd.

But in the third inning, the Sooners got a pair of two-run home runs from Kinzie Hansen and Alynah Torres to take a 4-1 lead. It was Hansen’s sixth WCWS home run of her career, moving her into third all-time. It was the first Women’s College World Series home run of Torres career.

 

In the bottom of the fourth, the Sooners really pulled away when Cydney Sanders hit a two-run home run to drive in Rylie Boone to go ahead 6-1. Hansen picked up her third RBI of the day when she drove in Maya Bland for a 7-1 lead. The home run was Sanders’ 14th of the season and her first since April 16 against Tulsa.

Oklahoma went down in order in the bottom of the fifth but earned the run-rule win in the sixth with an offensive barrage.

Jayda Coleman led off the inning with a double, and Tiare Jennings singled and advanced to second. With runners on second and third with nobody out, Ella Parker and Riley Ludlam popped out, bringing up Alyssa Brito, who put her stamp on the game with a two-run walk-off single to end the game.

Kelly Maxwell had a solid outing to allow just one run but ran into trouble in the fourth when she walked two batters and hit a batter to load the bases. But Kierston Deal came in to end the bases loaded threat and allowed just two hits over her 2.1 innings pitched.

Maxwell went 3.2 innings pitched and allowed one run on one hit but walked four and struck out four to earn the win.

Coleman, Hansen, and Brito each had two hits in the game to lead the way for the Sooners, who had four extra-base hits in the win.

Among the eight teams in the Women’s College World Series field, Duke had the lowest ERA and opponent batting average. The Sooners knocked them around for 11 hits, three walks, and nine runs. It’s the eighth time in their 10-game winning streak that the pitching staff has allowed two runs or fewer and the seventh time Oklahoma has scored six or more runs.

The Sooners now move on to a Saturday matchup with No. 6 seed UCLA.

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Story originally appeared on Sooners Wire