Photo credit Ty Russell/OU Athletics
Texas pitchers had a hard time keeping the ball in the park against Oklahoma batters on Saturday. In a weekend that frequently featured the long no day showed more dominance than Sunday’s series finale as the Sooners completed a third-consecutive run-rule victory over a Top 10 team.
Jana Johns, Jayda Coleman, Lynnsie Elam, and Tiare Jennings all went yard for the Sooners as they completed a three-game sweep of 7th-ranked Texas by a final of 9-0. All three games came in run-rule fashion and all three ended in the fifth inning. Sunday was the first time in the series that the Sooners didn’t need their at bat in the fifth due to the constant pounding they gave the Longhorn battery of pitchers through the first four frames.
After a scoreless opening frame, Oklahoma plated its first run of the day on a sacrifice fly from Taylon Snow that scored Coleman. As the next batter, Johns went yard to center field, on a 3-2 pitch, to put the momentum in the Sooner dugout with a 3-0 lead.
An inning later Coleman left the yard, over the left center field wall, for her fifth home run of the season. She was followed by Elam of went deep to left field to give the Sooners back-to-back dingers for the second time this weekend.
With the Longhorns weary and wobbled Oklahoma went for the knockout in the bottom of the fourth. Needing just one more score to get the game into run-rule territory, Jennings went above and beyond with a two-run homer to left field that also scored Mackenzie Donihoo to make the score 9-0.
The Sooners didn’t wrap up the series only with offense though. They used solid pitching and fielding to complete the 17th shutout win of the season against a college opponent (They also shutout Team Mexico 11-0). Freshman Nicole May worked her way out of two bases-loaded jams with some nasty rise ball and off-speed work against the Texas lineup. She also benefitted from some spectacular fielding from the ladies behind her.
May improved her season record to 11-0 after throwing 4.1 innings of shutout ball in which she struck out four and allowed six hits. She was relieved in the fifth by Alanna Thiede who recorded the final two outs to send the Longhorns packing.
In all, Oklahoma outscored Texas 30-3 over the weekend and had nine home runs from six different batters. Jennings led the team with three of the nine homers. On the season OU has 102 home runs and are firmly chasing the single-season record of 158 set by Hawaii in 2010.
The Sooners, now 33-0 on the season and 9-0 in Big 12 play, will step out of conference play to visit Georgia on Tuesday for a doubleheader that will be aired on the S.E.C. Network before hosting Texas Tech next weekend.
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