ECU softball splits at UCO

Wanda Malone tossed a six-hitter as East Central University edged host Central Oklahoma 2-1 Tuesday in the first game of a Lone Star Conference North softball doubleheader at Broncho Field.

UCO got to Malone in the second game and came away with a 6-2 victory over the Lady Tigers as the two teams settled for a split.

ECU moved to 27-17 overall and 8-10 in the LSC North with the split while the Bronchos went to 25-13 and 10-4.

ECU 2, Central Oklahoma 1 (Game 1)

Malone struck out nine and walked only one as she worked all seven innings in allowing the one earned run.

Both Lady Tiger runs, one of which was unearned, came in the fourth inning.

Desiree’ Nordie led off with a double, Kasey Barber advanced her to third with a single and Cassandra Nordie executed a bunt-single to load up the bases. One out later, Hillary Hughes knocked in a run with a fielder’s choice and an error on the play enabled her to go to second as Barber scored the unearned run.

The Nordie sisters, Desiree’ and Cassandra, along with Barber each went 2-for-3 from the plate for all six of ECU’s hits off losing pitcher Rachael Steverson, who struck out five and walked only one. Desiree’ Nordie had the only extra-base hit of the game for the Lady Tigers with a double.

Megan Bentley and Kayce Raines each went 2-for-3 for UCO. Raines’ RBI single in the second inning lifted the Bronchos to an early 1-0 advantage.

Central Oklahoma 6, ECU 2 (Game 2)

Nicole Sanchez homered in the seventh, but it was too little, too late as the Bronchos came away with the win. It was the third home run of the year for Sanchez.

UCO scored four runs in the third off the starter and loser Malone (12-9) and added two more scores in the fourth to take control at 4-1. Randee Crockett relieved Malone in the fourth with one runner on and worked the remaining three innings.

The Lady Tigers, who finished with just six hits, received a 2-for-3 effort from Brandi Goodrich, who scored ECU’s only other run in the third inning. Goodrich hit a one-out single up the middle, stole second base with two outs and scored the unearned run when Shelby Simmons singled and advanced on a throwing error.

Brittany Weaver hit a three-run homer to highlight UCO’s four-run third inning. Molly Shivers and Kelsey Tiger each went 2-for-4 with an RBI and a run scored for the victorious Bronchos.

Shivers (14-7) allowed the two earned runs with four walks and five strikeouts for the pitching victory.

The two teams will do battle again on Saturday at 2 p.m. in Ada.

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