There were other games over the weekend for both clubs, but everyone pointed to the No. 1 vs. No. 2 softball showdown between UCLA and Oklahoma on Sunday.
A chance for the Bruins to cement their No. 1 ranking? A chance for the Sooners, two-time national champions, to send their own message?
Consider this message sent by Patty Gasso and his team with an emphatic 14-0 five-inning victory over the Bruins to close out the Mary Nutter Collegiate Classic in Cathedral City, Calif.
It was on cue that he started for OU in the second inning. And once it started, the Sooners (13-1) weren’t about to let go.
The Sooners hit six home runs and Alex Storako (4-0) threw a three-hit shutout to help OU reclaim that No. 1 ranking again.
It all started with two withdrawals. Two outs and no one in the top of the second inning, and Alyssa Brito opened the floodgates.
British and Jayda Coleman hit two consecutive solo home runs. Tiara Jennings followed by a two-pointer that knocked UCLA star pitcher Megan Faraimo (9-1) out of the circle. It didn’t matter ’cause Haley Lee threw a two-run homer to close the inning by six runs.
From there it became the Kinzie Hansen to show. The senior is making his first appearances of the season after missing the first two weeks delivered in huge fashion.
Hansen hit a two-run homer to make it 10-0 in the fourth inning. Then she punctuated OU’s dominating performance with a three-run homer to make it 14-0 the next frame.
It took Storako just 71 pitches in five innings to defeat the Bruins. She didn’t walk a batter and struck out five.
After OU’s 4-3 loss to Baylor last weekend, it was a test of how Gasso’s club would react. The theme for the whole week was don’t panic, come back to it. I guess it worked because the response was answered in the most positive way possible.
The Sooners outscored their five opponents 50-4 over the three days and let the softball world know, hey, OR is not going anywhere.
It might be a different team with different players in their roles, but the Sooners aren’t slowing down any time soon.
OR 10, Loyola Marymount 1 (5)
A hit parade for the Sooners as OU had 14 12-man hits en route to another run-rule win.
The highlight was seeing Jayda Coleman hit her first home run of the season as expectations had been incredibly high for the junior over the first few weekends.
It was the first year in the circle as Kierston Agreement gave up one run in four innings and struck out three to improve to 2-0 on the season.
OR 10, Utah 3
A nice balanced effort here for the Sooners. Tiara JenningsJocelyn Erickson And Alyssa Brito all had two RBIs.
OU scored three in the first and six in the second to pick up another win, though it turned out to be the weekend’s only no-rules victory.
Jordy Bahl continued to work, striking back five goals to claim his fourth victory of the season.
OR 8, Texas A&M 0 (5)
The Sooners took advantage of three errors from the Aggies when six of the eight runs were unearned. OU scored four in the first and four in the third and that was enough.
The highlight of the game was a three-run homer from pinch hitter Jocelyn Erickson as the rookie continues to show she’s up to the task.
Nicole May didn’t have her best game giving up five hits, but she got away with it when it mattered. No runs in four innings with five strikeouts.
OR 8, CSU-Fullerton 0 (5)
The Sooners started the weekend in style, thanks in large part to the left fielder Rylie Boon and receiver Sophie Nugent.
Each hit a home run and made three runs. It was more than enough for Storako to pitch four shutout innings, striking out four.
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