LUBBOCK, TX (April 26, 2010) – No. 4 Lubbock Christian University swept No. 9 Oklahoma City University at home for the first time in program history Monday afternoon at PlainsCapital Park and moved atop the Sooner Athletic Conference standings in the process. The Lady Chaps never trailed winning the opener 4-3 and rallied from a 4-1 deficit in the second game to win 6-5 in eight innings.
In the opener, all seven runs in the game came with two outs. The Lady Chaps struck first with a two-out double by Jen Frazier in the bottom of the second inning. LCU added to the lead in the bottom of the fourth inning with Kayla Van Dieren duplicating Frazier's hit with a two-out two-run double to the right-centerfield gap for a 4-0 advantage. LCU pitcher Alyssa Gutierrez held the Stars to three hits through five innings, but the Stars finally got on the board in the sixth inning. Nathalie Timmermans hit a three-run home run with two outs over the centerfield fence against a strong northern wind to place the Stars within a run. Gutierrez was able to strikeout a pair of batters in the top of the seventh, including striking out Kelby Roberson for the final out while Katie Proffitt represented the tying run at first base.
LCU relied on several defensive gems in the 4-3 win. In the second inning Nathalie Timmermans attempted to score from third base on a suicide-squeeze bunt attempt by Laurin Hess, but Gutierrez fielded the bunt by shoveling the ball with her glove in one motion to catcher Amanda Parsons, who applied the tag for the out. An inning later with OCU's LeeAnn Lopez at second base and one out, Autumn Mayberry hit a ground ball to Kim Frazier at first base. Frazier touched first and threw across the diamond to her sister Jennifer at third base, who tagged Lopez to end the threat with the double play. Gutierrez pitched the complete game for the Lady Chaps and allowed three runs off five hits in seven innings. She struck out six batters. Jenni Gaby fell to 5-3 with the loss, as she allowed four runs on four hits in six innings.
In the second game, the Stars jumped out to a 1-0 lead in the first inning off an RBI double by their ace pitcher Lily LaVelle. In the second inning, the Lady Chaps tied the game at 1-1 in the bottom of the second inning off of two hits, one by Latainna Eltsosie and a two-out basehit by Cori Enriquez. The top of the third inning was almost exactly a duplicate of the first inning for the Stars with a Mayberry single. She then stole second, and scored off of a double by LaVelle. The game turned into a defensive contest until the top of the sixth when OCU extended their lead to 4-1 with three hits and one LCU error. In the bottom of the inning, LCU tied the game at four, scoring three runs on two hits. Again the three-run rally happened with two outs. The bases were loaded after two walks by LaVelle when Enriquez singled in Priscilla FaGaines. Jen Frazier was then hit by a pitch that brought in another run. Van Dieren had a full count when she drew a walk on a very close called ball four that scored the third and tying run of the inning.
In the seventh inning, the Stars scored one run on two hits, breaking the 4-4 tie, and forcing the Lady Chaps to score in their last at-bat. They did just that after Kim Frazier led off with a double down the right field line for her first hit of the day. FaGaines then hit a hard ball down the left field line and Frazier was sent home, but was gunned out at home plate by the left fielder Mayberry. With two outs, LCU was down to their final out when Amanda Parsons came to bat and FaGaines on third base. Parsons blasted a single over the center fieler's head that scored FaGaines and tied the game at 5-5. The Lady Chaps managed to hold Oklahoma City without a run in the top of the eighth inning. International tiebreaking rules allow the teams to start the extra inning frames with a runner at second base, which allowed LCU to start the bottom of the eighth inning with Stephanie Rendon at second base. After a sacrifice bunt by Enriquez advanced Stephanie Rendon to third, three consecutive walks by LaVelle brought in the winning run and clinched the sweep for the Lady Chaps.
Gutierrez was the workhorse for the Lady Chaps pitching all eight innings in the second game, giving up five runs on 13 hits. She had seven strikeouts in her 20th complete game of the season, which improved her record to 33-2 on the season. LaVelle, the star for Oklahoma City, going 4-5 with three runs-batted-in, was the losing pitcher. She gave up six runs on eight hits and dropped her record to 16-3. Parsons was the offensive star for the Lady Chaps at the plate, going 3-for-3 with the crucial RBI that sent the game into extra innings.
Lubbock Christian improved its overall record to 48-4 and its Sooner Athletic Conference record to 27-3. Oklahoma City dropped its overall record to 32-10 and its SAC record to 27-5. LCU's final SAC conference series against Rogers State University is scheduled for Thursday, April 29 with the first pitch at 1:00 p.m. With a sweep of Rogers State, Lubbock Christian would claim the Sooner Athletic Conference regular season crown for a second consecutive season.