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Sooners start fast, take 2-0 lead over Houston

Apr. 20—It had been three weeks since the last time Oklahoma took a 2-0 lead over a conference opponent, but a four-run first inning put the Sooners in position to do just that on Saturday against Houston.

The Sooners loaded up the bases and Kinzie Hansen poked a single through the right side of the defense for the first two runs of the game. Kasidi Pickering added another on the next at-bat with a double into center field.

Aside from an uneventful second inning, the Sooners put pressure on the Cougars' defense in every inning of their 10-2 run-rule win.

Hansen led off the third with a single and scored four pitches later on a triple by Pickering. The Sooners scored on a walk, a wild pitch and a line out to left field to extend their lead to 9-0.

Hansen went back to the plate with two outs and brought in their sixth run of the inning on a ground out to the second baseman. She finished the day 2-3 at the plate with a team-high three RBI.

The Sooners had 11 hits with just three going for extra bases. Still, two of those were triples including one by Alyssa Brito in the second inning.

Nicole May didn't let a batter get on base until giving up a lead off single in the top of the fourth. Three batters later, the Cougars hit a two-run home run that ended up providing their only runs of the game.

May pitched 4.1 innings and allowed three hits, two earned runs and one walk with four strikeouts. Paytn Monticelli picked up the final two outs and allowed just one hit.

The Sooners will be looking to complete the series sweep in the finale on Sunday at 1 p.m. The game will be broadcast on ESPN+.