Hogs move into winner’s bracket

NORMAN, Okla. – The No. 24 Arkansas softball team downed the Fordham Rams, 5-1, on Friday in the first round of the NCAA Norman Regional.

Arkansas (35-18) used nine hits to score five unanswered runs in the game. The Razorbacks now await the winner of No. 1 Oklahoma and Marist and will play the victor at 1 p.m. today The game will be broadcast on ESPN3.com.

“It’s great to get that first win,” head coach Mike Larabee said. “We were anxious to get going, I thought we played a solid game. Our defense was great today and I thought we did a great job of communicating on defense.”

Leading the way for the Razorbacks was sophomore pitcher Kimmy Beasley. She pitched a complete game and allowed one run on six hits. She struck out eight batters in the contest to secure the win.

“Kimmy did a great job,” Larabee said. “In our program we talk about being great in the circle and playing championship defense. We did that tonight and got timely hits. We have been fortunate to have a good pitching staff all year.”

Freshman Stephanie Canfield paced the Razorbacks in the batter’s box. She went 3-for-3 and notched an RBI in the game. Also having a nice day at the plate was Devon Wallace. She finished 2-for-3 with a double, a walk, a run scored and an RBI.

“Stephanie really had a nice day at the plate,” Larabee said. “She had three big hits tonight and manufactured some runs. Devon getting on base is really important, she is a catalyst for us. It was nice to see her get to swing the bat.”

Clarisa Navarro finished the game with two RBIs. She went 1-for-2 and walked at the plate. Navarro now leads the team with 37 RBIs this season.