OKLAHOMA CITY – Two days after allowing just two runs in a pair of tough-luck 1-0 losses, FHSU surrendered 23 runs on Wednesday in 12-4 and 11-8 losses to Oklahoma Baptist. The Tigers went winless on their four-game road swing to Oklahoma in non-conference action and dipped to 7-8 overall on the season. Oklahoma Baptist improved to 10-14 overall with the wins on a day where the wind was howling out.
Game 1: Oklahoma Baptist 12, Fort Hays State 4
Game one of the doubleheader was shortened to six innings due to the run rule, which the Bison reached in the bottom of the sixth. The game did not get off to a good start when FHSU starter Michaelanne Nelson surrendered five runs in the first inning, including four on a grand slam by Demi Dobbs, after issuing a pair of walks to load the bases. Nelson lasted only a third of an inning before turning the ball over to Megan Jamison in relief.
Jamison held the Bison at bay over the second, third, and fourth innings, allowing FHSU to claw its way back into the game. In the second inning, Terran Caldwell drove in Fort Hays State’s first run with an RBI single. In the third, Bailey Boxberger laced a seeing-eye single through the right side of the infield to plate the Tigers’ second run. In the fifth, a double to lead off the inning by Sara Breckbill and then an RBI double by Elise Capra pulled the Tigers within two at 5-3. However, the progress all went away when OBU plated five more runs in the bottom of the fifth. A bases-clearing throwing error plated the last three runs of the five in the inning.
After coming into the game in relief in the pitching circle in the fifth, Sierra Rodriguez gave the Tigers their final run of the game with a solo home run in the sixth, making the score 10-4 in favor of OBU. A two-out, two-run double by OBU in the bottom of the sixth pushed the score to the run-rule margin of eight.
In relief, Jamison went 4.0 innings and allowed three runs (two earned) on five hits and a walk. Rodriguez allowed four runs (two earned) on four hits and a walk in 1.1 innings of work. Nelson took the loss, moving to 2-4 on the year.
Game 2: Oklahoma Baptist 11, Fort Hays State 8
The Tigers saw another rough start in game two when Oklahoma Baptist plated four runs in the first. Three consecutive singles plated the first run for OBU, then a three-run homer by Demi Dobbs instantly pushed the lead to four.
Tiger starter Hailey Chapman settled in and held the Bison scoreless in the second and third before the Tigers erupted for a huge eight-run fourth inning to take their first lead of the day.
FHSU started its rally with a pair of singles and a walk to load the bases. Sierra Rodriguez took a wild pitch in the foot, which forced in Fort Hays State’s first run. Terran Caldwell then knocked in a run on a fielding error by the third baseman, cutting the lead in half. Katie Adler tied the game up with a single up the middle plating two runs. Caldwell and Adler then came in to score on a Sara Breckbill double to the left center gap, giving FHSU the lead at 6-4. Bailey Boxberger then sent a ball over the left field wall for her third home run of the season and pushed the Tiger advantage to 8-4. However, it was not enough as the Tigers nearly gave back all of its runs in the bottom half of the inning.
Oklahoma Baptist plated its first pair of runs in the fourth on a two-RBI double with one out. Another double instantly made the score 8-7 in favor of FHSU. A walk, then a two-out single wound up loading the bases. Shelby Savage made the Tigers pay by hitting OBU’s second grand slam of the day and erasing all the work the Tigers accomplished in the top half of the inning. Chapman lasted only 3.2 innings before handing the ball to Michaelanne Nelson, who kept the Bison scoreless over the final 2.1 innings. But, the damage was done and FHSU was held scoreless the rest of the way as well.
-The pair of losses on Wednesday to Oklahoma Baptist were the first losses this year in which the Tigers scored more than one run.
-The Tigers had not surrendered more than 8 runs in a game this season until both contests Wednesday.
-Bailey Boxberger led the Tigers with 3 RBI for the day.
-Sara Breckbill led the Tigers in hits for the day, going 4-for-7 at the dish.
Fort Hays State now gears up for weekend conference matchups at home with Missouri Southern and Pittsburg State. FHSU swept Pittsburg State in a non-conference doubleheader earlier this season in Pittsburg.