OU softball stays rolling, sweeps Kansas

On3 imageby:Bob Przybylo03/30/24

BPrzybylo

When OU softball starts games the way it did all weekend at Kansas, boy, it just makes it that much tougher. The Sooners were great from the jump and earned another Big 12 sweep.

OU scored three in the top of the first and was never threatened in a 7-3 victory at Kansas on Saturday afternoon to conclude the three-game series.

This was the series for senior Jayda Coleman. Another home run, brilliant play in the outfield. Again, a team rounding right into form on schedule.

Coleman had two hits and added three walks. The top part of the Sooners lineup was simply sensational vs. the Jayhawks.

Tiare Jennings had a two-run home run to begin the game. Alyssa Brito added another home run. Brito and Jennings each had three hits, scored twice and drove in two runs.

From there? It was five pitchers as head coach Patty Gasso was looking to get the staff some work. Karlie Keeney came on in relief of Kierston Deal and actually ends up with the win. Keeney is now 4-1.

Time for Texas. OU heads to Austin next weekend. UT lost two of three at Oklahoma State this weekend. No. 1 OU is now 34-1 overall and 12-0 in Big 12.

OU 17, KU 0 (5) (Friday)

A pitching gem one night, and an all-out offensive assault the next.

A seven-run top of the second put the game away, but OU once again attacked early with a three-spot in the first as well.

It started with the first batter, and Jayda Coleman going yard. She would hit two home runs and is now in the top 10 all-time for career hits as a Sooner.

Tiare Jennings added a home run as did Alyssa Brito. Six players had multiple hits and four players drove in at least two runs.

The KU struggles were in stark contrast to Nicole May. The senior only needed 32 pitches to go 3.1 innings and move to 11-0 this season.

Head coach Patty Gasso gave the final opportunities to SJ Geurin and Paytn Monticelli to close out a two-hit shutout.

OU 6, KU 1 (Thursday)

One conference start after another, and Kelly Maxwell is pitching with some next-level confidence. She took it to another level.

Maxwell was one out away from her sixth career no-hitter. One out. Maxwell went the full seven innings. She allowed the one hit, a solo home run, while walking four and striking out nine.

Associate head coach Jen Rocha said earlier this week about Maxwell simply being a student of the game. Someone who can watch, observe and figure it out and get better.

“She’s sort of taken off,” said Rocha earlier this week. “Obviously a familiarity with hitters … so just kind of getting her vantage point. KD has been our lefty on the staff, but to have another one with different stuff and kind of getting that perspective of what she’s seen and how she’s felt against opponents.

“Game planning with her has been really fun. I’ve been picking her brain a little bit on what she wants to do and how she wants to set up hitters and get them out.”  

What might have made it easier for Maxwell is going to the mound up a couple of runs. There’s something about playing on the road that brings out the offense, especially early.

This time it was Tiare Jennings with the two-run home run in the top of the first. With the KU confidence at an all-time high, ranked in some polls, it was imperative for OU to get off to that type of start.

Then it happened again in the second with a two-run shot by Cydney Sanders. And Alynah Torres joined in on the fun with a solo home run in the third.

When you’re that effective early and Maxwell is in the circle? That’s going to be mission accomplished.

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