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OU Softball: Oklahoma Starts National Title Defense With Victory Over Duke

Jordy Bahl was responsible for an RBI and a shutout win over Duke in Oklahoma's season opener on Thursday.

Oklahoma’s title defense got rolling out of the station on Thursday.

Jordy Bahl made her return to the circle for the Sooners, and she helped lead OU past Duke 4-0 to open the season at the Mark Campbell Invitational in Irvine, CA.

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Texas A&M transfer Haley Lee opened up the second inning with a single for Oklahoma.

She was advanced to second base with a groundout from shortstop Grace Lyons, and Bahl of all people drove Lee home for OU’s first run of the year.

The second inning lead wasn’t indicative of the contest turning into a blowout, however.

Duke pitcher Claire Davidson stranded Jayda Coleman on the bases in the first inning and retied the Sooner offense in order in the third inning, containing OU’s bats.

Lee and Lyons returned in the fourth inning to double the Oklahoma lead.

Davidson hit Lee, and Patty Gasso replaced her on the bases with freshman Avery Hodge.

Alynah Torres laid down a bunt to push Hodge over to second, and Lyons rocketed ball to left field.

Hodge had to beat out the throw at the plate, but Duke’s catcher was unable to corral the ball and OU doubled its lead.

Lee capped off her Sooner debut with an RBI-single that drove Alyssa Brito home in the bottom of the fifth inning.

Rylie Boone plated Lyons on a fielder’s choice in the bottom of the sixth inning to add some final insurance.

While the offense scored at a steady pace, Bahl was excellent in the circle.

The returning NFCA Freshman of the Year pitched seven complete shutout innings, striking out eight Duke batters while only allowing four hits and two walks.

Second baseman Tiare Jennings finished the game 1-for-4 at the plate, and Lee finished a perfect 2-for-2. 

OU won’t have long to dwell on the win, as the Sooners return to action at 9 p.m. on Thursday evening to play Liberty. 

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