Nine Home Runs Power Pioneers Past ConnorsApril 1, 2013
Warner, OK- Western Oklahoma State (31-7, 10-4) hit nine home runs on the road Friday against Connors State College to win both games of the conference double-header. The Pioneers erased a 9-1 deficit in game one and came back to win 10-9. Western dominated game two with six home runs and a one hit shutout from Kelsey Watson in a 12-0 five inning victory.
The Pioneers struck early in game one as Emery Fox hit the second pitch of the game out to left field for a solo home run. Western got walks from Bailey Spencer and Emily Jones later in the inning but would not score again. Bailee Kaderka started in the circle for the Pioneers and retired the side in order in the bottom of the first inning.
Western came up short in the top of the second leaving two runners on base and leaving the score 1-0. Connors knotted the game at one with a two out rbi ground ball single to left field in the bottom of the inning.
The game unraveled for the Pioneers in the bottom of the third inning as Connors got eight runs off seven hits and three walks to take a 9-1 lead. Four of the runs where charged to starter Bailee Kaderka while the other four went to Kelsey Watson who came on in relief during the inning.
Down eight runs the Pioneers went to work in the top of the fourth. Ashley Rutledge and Haylee Beck led the inning of with walks to bring Fox to the plate. The sophomore first baseman hit her second home run of the game with this one going to dead center for a three run bomb. Maggie McBrayer wasted no time as she hit the next pitch out to dead center for a solo homer and trim the deficit to four runs. Kaderka returned to the circle in the bottom of the inning and held Connors scoreless to bring the Pioneers back to the plate.
In the top of the fifth, Rutledge started off with a walk for the second straight inning and would move all the way to third on a sacrifice bunt by Beck. Fox then delivered an rbi single to left field to pull the Pioneers within three. Fox then stole second base before McBrayer singled to center field to put runners at the corners with one out. Spencer then delivered a sacrifice fly ball to deep right-center field to make the score 9-7. Jones followed with a single to center field to move McBrayer to second. McBrayer then scored when a Katy Fletcher ground ball resulted in a Connors' error to make it a one run game. Malori Moss came up next with two outs and worked the count to 2-1. On the next pitch Moss delivered a double to left field to bring home Jones and Fletcher as the Pioneers took a 10-9 lead.
Kaderka held the lead for the Pioneers as the freshman kept the Cowgirls off the board the remainder of the game giving Western a 10-9 win.
"They (Connors) had us down in a hole early and our girls showed a lot of heart and fight coming back," said head coach Mike McBrayer. "It takes a lot of pride to come back from a situation like that but the bottom of the order kept rolling the lineup over for us and we kept getting it to the next hitter. Kaderka showed a lot of "bulldog" coming back and throwing four scoreless innings to finish the game."
Bailey Kaderka (12-4) got the win throwing six innings and allowing four earned runs. The Pioneers got three hits apiece from Emery Fox and Maggie McBrayer with Fox also driving in five runs. Malori Moss and Haylee Beck also added two hits in the game.
Western jumped off to a big start in the second game. The Pioneers led the game off with back-to-back-to-back home runs. Fox started it driving the second pitch over the left field fence for her third home run of the day. McBrayer and Spencer followed with shots to dead center to make the score 3-0. Jones then got hit by a pitch and Fletcher singled but the Pioneers would not score again in the inning. Watson got the start in the circle for Western and allowed the only Connors hit in the game in the first inning before getting a strike out and a ground ball to get out of the inning.
The score remained the same until the top of the third when Western struck for three more runs. Jones led off the inning with a single to right field. Fletcher then reached on an error to get the first two hitters on base. Moss followed with her eighth home run of the year hitting a towering shot to left field to put Western up 6-0.
Western went back to work in the top of the fourth. Fox led off with a single to left field. McBrayer then hit her third bomb of the game. This one a two run shot to left field and bringing her season total to ten. Two batters later, Emily Jones got in on the action hitting a solo home run to center field for her sixth of the season and putting the Pioneers up 9-0.
The Pioneers made their final charge in the fifth inning. Pinch hitter Ashlyn Tharp led off with a single. Later in the inning, pinch hitter Alyx Ethington worked a walk followed by a Fox single to load the bases. Two batters later, Western got a rbi single from Spencer followed by walks to Jones and Kelly Walton with the bases loaded to make the score 12-0. That would be the final run for Western as they looked to finish the game in the bottom of the inning. Kelsey Watson finished her shutout performance in the bottom of the inning retiring the Cowgirls' hitters in order.
"We've challenged this team's pride in the last few days and they answered with a lot fight today," said head coach Mike McBrayer. "The girls played with a lot of confidence and intensity and that's how we have to come out every day the rest of this season."
Kelsey Watson (19-3) threw a complete game one hit shutout in the contest. Watson added six strikeouts to her season total and allowed only one walk. Emery Fox added three more hits while Maggie McBrayer, Bailey Spencer and Emily Jones collected two hits apiece in the game.
Western will now travel to Poteau, OK, on Thursday for a conference double-header with Carl Albert State College. The first game is scheduled for a two o'clock start.
SCHOOL RECORD WATCH
-Emery Fox's three home runs against Connors State College ties her season total last year of nineteen and has her setting second for the school single season record. Megan Bell's twenty-six homers in 2011 currently holds the record.
-Emily Jones has been hit by a pitch six time this year which ties her for second for the single season record that was set by Emery Fox last year with seven.
-Malori Moss is now tied for fifth in single season stolen bases with seventeen. Ty Washinton currently holds the record with her twenty-seven steals in 2011.
-The 2013 Pioneers have been hit by twenty-three pitches which trails last year's record of twenty-nine.
-Emery Fox is fourth in the conference in hitting with a .426 batting average.
-Fox leads the conference in home runs with 19. Maggie McBrayer is third with ten. Bailey Spencer is setting at fourth with nine home runs. Malori Moss is tied for fifth with eight and Emily Jones is tied for seventh with six.
-Fox is setting atop the conference in rbi's with 47. Bailey Spencer is third followed by Maggie McBrayer for fourth. Emily Jones is tied for fifth with Katy Fletcher tied for tenth.
-Malori Moss is third in the conference in steals with 17 and Fox is fifth with 15.
-Kelsey Watson leads the conference in earned run average at 1.11 and Bailee Kaderka is setting in fourth.
-Watson leads the conference in wins with 19 followed by Kaderka with 12.
-Watson is at the top of the conference in strikeouts with 167.
-Watson also leads the conference in saves with four followed by Kelly Walton with two.
-Emery Fox is currently third in the country in home runs with nineteen.
-Fox is fifth nationally in runs scored with fifty.
-Emily Jones' twenty-one walks ranks tenth nationally.
-Fox holds a 1.521 slugging percentage that ranks third in the nation.
-Fox is tied for third with thirty-two extra base hits.
-Kelsey Watson's nineteen wins ranks third nationally.
-Watson is fourth in strikeouts with 167.
-Watson is tied for third with four saves.
-The 2013 Pioneers are currently second nationally in home runs with fifty-eight.
-Western is tenth in the country in slugging percentage with a .563 mark.
-The Pioneer pitchers are tenth nationally in strikeouts with 226.
-The pitching staff is ranked eleventh nationally in earned run average at 1.67.