Rich Tortorelli, Assistant Athletic Director for Communications
OKLAHOMA CITY – Oklahoma City University locked down its fourth consecutive Sooner Athletic Conference softball regular-season championship with 6-1 and 8-0 wins over Central Christian (Kan.) on Thursday night at Ann Lacy Stadium.
Oklahoma City, ranked fifth in the NAIA, has won the SAC title 18 times. The Stars wrapped up the regular season 44-7, 29-3 in the SAC.
OCU will be the No. 1 seed in the SAC Tournament on May 3-5. The conference tournament will be held at Ann Lacy Stadium and USAO’s Bill Smith Ballpark the first two days with the championship game May 5 at OCU. Tournament pairings will be announced at the conclusion of the league schedule.
Kennedy Jackson keyed the Stars with five hits on the night, while Mackenzie Martinelli hit her first college home run.
In the first game, OCU responded after Central Christian scored in the top of the first. Julianne Abeloe smacked an RBI double to left-center field, and Jaci Smith added a sacrifice fly to left to put the Stars up 2-1 in the bottom of the first.
In the fourth inning, the Stars racked up a pair of runs. Jackson reached home on Abeloe’s sacrifice bunt, while Bailey Whitmore nailed an RBI single. Abby Meador closed out the scoring with a fifth-inning sacrifice fly.
Jackson, a freshman from Moore, Okla., notched a 3-for-3 game with two runs scored, and Whitmore, a junior from Oklahoma City, went 3-for-4 with an RBI. Baileigh Loux, a freshman from Reno, Nev., was 2-for-3 with a run scored for the Stars.
Georgia Wall collected the victory to move to 18-4. Wall, a junior from Marlow, Okla., struck out seven and allowed one run on three hits and two walks in seven innings. She posted her 19th complete game of the year.
In the nightcap, Abeloe drove in a second-inning run on a base hit to left field. OCU went up 5-0 as Martinelli pounded a two-run shot over the left-center field wall in the third. Loux added a sac fly in the inning.
Meador, a senior from Midwest City, Okla., socked a run-scoring single to left to put OCU ahead 8-0 in the fifth.
Jackson produced a 2-for-2 performance and scored three runs, while Martinelli, a freshman from Sacramento, Calif., drove in three runs. Loux went 1-for-2, scored a run and knocked in a run. Lacy Joyner, a senior from Mustang, Okla., scored twice.
Jaden Shores (13-2) reeled in the win. Shores, a sophomore from Blanchard, Okla., turned in her seventh shutout and eighth complete game this year. Shores fanned seven while limiting Central Christian to two hits.