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Long ball leads Lady’Backs to sweep

BY ANDRES FOCIL
Long ball leads Lady’Backs to sweep

LEXINGTON, Ky. – The University of Arkansas softball team hit four home runs on a cold, rainy Sunday to take a five-inning, 14-1 win and a three-game Southeastern Conference sweep of Kentucky at the UK Softball Complex in Lexington, Ky.

The Lady Razorbacks (32-18, 5-12 SEC) swept the Wildcats (15-27, 3-16 SEC) in Lexington for the first time in school history. The last time Arkansas swept an SEC opponent was at Lady’Back Yard last year against Kentucky.

Senior Dayna Huckabee launched two home runs while junior Kayla Johnson and sophomore Sandra Smith hit one apiece. The Lady’Backs hit nine long balls in the series to increase their season count to 59. In addition to holding the season home run record, Smith broke the season RBI record driving in her 39th RBI this year on her 14th home run.

After throwing a two-hit shutout yesterday, sophomore Miranda Dixon gave up just two hits again today and held Kentucky to one run while fanning eight.

“It was an outstanding game offensively and Miranda (Dixon) pitched extremely well,” said head coach Jamie Pinkerton. “We were patient at the plate and took advantage of the opportunities given to us. I’m extremely proud of this team.”

Kentucky got out to a quick start in the first inning after Audrey Meyer walked and was plated on a double by Molly Johnson.

In the top of the second, Huckabee reached on a fielder’s choice before sophomore Brittany Robison laced a single off the foot of Katie McCarty playing third base. Senior Samantha Buckner then hit a worm-burner up the middle and through the legs of the Kentucky defense that scored Huckabee and Robison. Buckner crossed the plate on a ball to left field by Leslie Dixon that put the Lady’Backs up 3-1.

Johnson led off the third with a single through the left side. A dropped fly ball put Miranda Dixon on base and moved Johnson to second before Smith and Huckabee hit back-to-back home runs to give Arkansas a 7-1 lead.

In the fourth inning junior Jocelyne Moncrief and Bachkora were on base for a three-run home run to center field by Johnson that increased the Lady’Backs’ lead to 10-1.

Arkansas was not done yet, plating four more runs in the fifth. Moncrief and Bachkora reached on errors and both were sacrificed into scoring position by Johnson before Miranda Dixon doubled to right center and plated the two Lady’Backs. With Dixon on base, Huckabee launched her second homer of the game to make the score 14-1 in favor of Arkansas.

Miranda Dixon threw a complete game to earn her 12th win of the year. She allowed just two hits and one run and gave up just seven hits in her last three outings in the circle.

Smith was 3-for-4 while Johnson and Huckabee were both 2-for-3. All three ended the day with three RBI.

After winning its last nine out of 10 contests, Arkansas returns to action at Lady’Back Yard on Thursday, April 17 facing No. 2 Alabama in an SEC midweek doubleheader.

For more information about Arkansas softball, please log on to LADYBACKS.COM.



Sports Category : Softball