By Michael Stewart, Assistant Sports Editor
The Lady Bison softball team hit the road to Durant, Oklahoma for a two-day, four game series with GAC rivals Southeastern Oklahoma State University that started April 21.
Although the state of Oklahoma received multiple inches of rain leading up to the game, the teams powered through the opposition and proceeded with the games.
The weekend featured four close games, all decided by one run.The Lady Bison were able to win the first and last games to go 2-2 in the series.
Heading into the series, OBU was riding a three game win streak after earning a double-header against SNU earlier in the week.
With the season wrapping up in a few weeks, the Lady Bison knew this was an important weekend.
“We were expecting to win,” Madison Vaughan said. “We knew we needed to take care of business.”
The Lady Bison came into the first game swinging as they hit three total homeruns, two from Madison Vaughan and one from Cheyenne Demaree.
“Hitting two homeruns in the same game is something I will never forget,” Vaughan said.
“I just felt comfortable and relaxed at the plate.”
Through four innings, they led the game 5-1.
However, in the bottom of the seventh inning, SEOSU tried to make a historic comeback.
The Lady Bison defense held strong and won the game 6-5.
“We were able to score our runs early in the game,” Katie Reyes said. “That allowed us to relax throughout the game because we knew we had a big lead.”
Hours later, the Bulldogs of SEOSU upended their earlier defeat with a 1-2 victory over the Lady Bison.
After two innings, the Lady Bison found themselves down two runs and searching for an answer.
The Lady Bison struggled to hit the ball, resulting in the loss.
Heading into Saturday, April 22, the Lady Bison’s strategy wouldn’t change.
“Our strategy is to win,” Vaughan said. “It’s just a matter of coming ready to play and being able to hit the ball.”
In game three, the Lady Bison held the opponent to just four hits; but, they scored on three of the four hits.
Meanwhile, the Lady Bison hit the ball seven times and only scored two runs.
Ultimately, the Lady Bison lost the game 2-3. Looking to bounce back from their back-to-back nail-biting losses, the Lady Bison were bound for victory in the final game of the series.
Game four turned into an eleven inning thriller, and had all the makings of a post-season match.
After falling behind 0-2 after the first inning, the Lady Bison were right where they wanted to be.
Typically, OBU strives in comeback situations.
“We have developed a comeback mentality,” Katie Reyes said. “We really trust each other in tough situations and are able to score runs when we are trailing.”
After seven innings, the Lady Bison were tied 2-2 with SEOSU, sending it to extra innings.
Neither team was able to post any runs until Bry Flanagan drove home Kursten Bergene to take the lead in the top of the eleventh.
In the bottom of the eleventh, SEOSU gave OBU everything they could handle. Sam Barry robbed the Bulldogs of a game-tying homerun as she leaped over the fence for an out.
Also, Amanda Peterson made a bigtime strikeout with the winning run on base to seal the victory. The game ended 3-2 in favor of the Lady Bison.
“It was a great team win,” Reyes said. “Sam Berry’s play was huge and Amanda Peterson threw a great game today.”
The Lady Bison are now 21-26 on the season.
Next, they will host Texas A&M-Commerce Tuesday at 4 P.M. before wrapping up the regular season with a series against Ouachita.
Photo courtesy of OBU Athletics.