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OU softball: Nicole Mendes to miss part of 2020 season with ACL injury

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Junior center fielder Nicole Mendes runs to third base in the game against UCLA for the national championship June 3.

Oklahoma coach Patty Gasso announced on Chris Plank's radio show that senior Nicole Mendes will miss part of 2020 season with an ACL injury, but expects for her to be back in early March.

"With her surgery, she didn't have a torn meniscus, just a torn ACL, which really helps speed up recovery, hopefully," Gasso said to Plank. "I foresee her being ready, and this is optimistic but I believe in her, I believe that she's going to be ready to play by early March. That's the hope."  

After the loss of four All-American seniors and the transfer of All-Big 12 pitcher Mariah Lopez, Mendes was projected to be one of the team's leaders and best players on the season. 

Mendes has been a crucial part of the Sooners' dominant run in recent years, as she has started 160 games and has a batting average of .357 on her career. Along with batting and playing centerfield, Mendes has pitched in 27 games and posted a 2.47 ERA.

This story has been corrected to say Mendes is expected to return by March 2020.

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I joined the Daily's sports desk in the spring of 2019 and have covered OU's wrestling, softball and football teams.

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