NORMAN — Oklahoma had its chances. The Sooners put eight runners on base Friday night against Texas, several times with no outs.
And stranded every one of them.
The Longhorns didn’t. They punched through at the first chance, with Brejae Washington reaching first on a bunt to lead off the game and scoring two batters later. That was just the beginning. Texas scored in four of six innings on Friday on its way to a 9-0, run-rule victory over OU.
It’s the kind of loss that’s totally unexpected of a team that handled Texas 4-1 on Thursday and was playing for a chance to take a commanding lead in the Big 12 title race. It’s also the kind of loss not seen in five years under coach Patty Gasso, with OU’s last loss by run rule coming against the Longhorns on March 28, 2009. In that time, OU had won 85 games by run-rule.
That streak ended Friday, and in disappointing fashion.
“I thought we came out soft,” coach Patty Gasso said. “Give Texas credit. They were aggressive and we weren’t. They had all three phases of their game working, and we didn’t have any of ours.”
The Sooners (33-10,10-2) didn’t look at all like the team that had won 15 of its last 16 games. Starting pitcher Kelsey Stevens, throwing for the second straight game after going the distance on Thursday, gave up six earned runs on seven hits, and Shelby Pendley gave up six hits in relief.
The Sooners also were listless at the plate. They managed just four hits and weren’t able to produce a momentum-changing play, including when they loaded the bases with no outs in the first inning before three straight batters failed to hit the ball out of the infield.
“We’re used to answering back, and we had an opportunity to in that first inning,” Gasso said. “When we didn’t, we still felt like we were okay. But it just took too long; we couldn’t get anything to ignite it.”