Traveling across the country, the Oklahoma Sooners began preparing for a challenging five game slate called the Clearwater Elite Invitational. Taking on Florida Atlantic in the first contest of the day, Mariah Lopez entered the circle. Facing three batters, the rising star needed just eight pitches to record three outs. Merely a sign of things to come, Lopez refused to let up throughout the contest producing a no-hitter. The effort propelled OU to a 4-0 win over FAU.
Taking over on the offensive side of the equation, Caleigh Clifton stepped up to the plate in a leadoff role. Displaying experience and patience, the senior drew a walk. Moving Clifton into scoring position, Jocelyn Alo singled up the middle. Failing to record an early out, the pressure fell on Florida Atlantic and Mia Olson certainly felt it. A wild pitch from the circle allowed the base runners to advance.
Now standing 60 feet from the first score of the day, Clifton watched on as Sydney Romero attempted to bring her home. Popping the ball up to left field, the program played it safe by holding the runners in place. A wise move as Fale Aviu singled shortly after to record the RBI and give Oklahoma the early lead. Before the close of the inning, a sacrifice fly and later another wild pitch would score Alo and Aviu respectively securing a sizable 3-0 lead after one.
Tacking on another run in the bottom of the fourth inning after chasing Mia Olson from the circle earlier in the game, Alo displayed the power she possesses. Blasting a double toward left center, the hit allowed Grace Lyons to score from first thanks to an error by the centerfielder. Noticing the mistake, Alo attempted to extend the hit into a triple and was thrown out to end the inning.
Clearly in control of the game, Patty Gasso decided to mix things up by replacing a few of the starters. Backing up Lopez in the circle, the group continued to excel collecting yet another win away from Norman. On the year, Lopez moves to 3-0 with a third consecutive complete game shutout.