OU Softball: Oklahoma Overpowers Florida Negate, Moves Within One Game of WCWS

NORMAN — Alyssa Brito took over Oklahoma’s first Mighty Regional contest on Thursday. 

In a rematch of closing yr’s Women’s College World Series finale, Brito relieved stress on OU starting pitcher Kelly Maxwell with huge defensive performs whereas hammering a pair of dwelling runs to gas the Sooners. 

Her homer in the fourth inning sparked a 5-escape outburst from Oklahoma that pushed OU previous Florida Negate 11-3 at Admire’s Area in 5 innings.

The two-seeded Sooners (53-6) are in point of fact one purchase away from returning to the WCWS, whereas 15-seeded Florida Negate (46-15) will bring collectively a likelihood to stave off elimination on Friday. 

“She is so fair correct this time of yr,” OU coach Patty Gasso acknowledged of Brito after the purchase. “At prepare, she’s swinging that procedure. Very free, very free. Very aggressive, so fair correct on protection as successfully. She’s doing all of it correct, leaving it on the discipline esteem she would possibly maybe furthermore merely calm.”

Final Box Score

Final Field Get / OU Stats

OU important every of its four dwelling runs to impression adequate give a rob to to Maxwell, who regarded miserable from the first pitch. 

She loaded the bases up in the first inning thanks to a pair of walks and a success batter, and Maxwell important an stunning diving play from Tiare Jennings at shortstop to relief the Seminoles off the board. 

The left-hander obtained FSU 2d baseman Devyn Flaherty to ground out to cease the threat without surrendering the lead, but Maxwell important 34 pitches to bring collectively out of the first inning on my own. 

However then Jennings struck again. 

Rather than creating an spectacular play in the discipline, she set apart the Sooners on high 1-0 with a solo shot to straightaway heart discipline. 

It modified into once her 95th-profession dwelling escape, leveling her with Lauren Chamberlain on this procedure’s all-time file books. 

— Oklahoma Softball (@OU_Softball) May maybe presumably maybe also 23, 2024

Brito reached with a two-out double and Kasidi Pickering drew a run, but OU couldn’t prolong the lead previous 1-0.

Florida Negate starter Ashtyn Danley then hit Rylie Boone in the 2d inning, which modified into any other escape thanks to Alynah Torres’ double, but the Sooners stranded any other pair to cease the 2d. 

Flaherty didn’t lunge down quietly in the third, rifling a two-out single by the particular side of OU’s infield in the third inning to tie the sport at 2-2, but Oklahoma’s offense chased Danley out of the sport in the third. 

Brito homered to lead off the body, after which the Sooners immediate set apart any other pair on thanks to a Pickering single and a Kinzie Hansen run. 

Florida Negate’s protection misplayed Boone’s bunt, crusing the ball into detestable territory to permit Pickering to attain. 

Down 4-2, Seminole head coach Lonni Alameda modified into once forced into a pitching trade. 

Without Makenna Reid and Allison Royalty as a consequence of smash, FSU turned to its fifth likelihood in Emma Wilson

Wilson today mishandled Torres’ grounder and needed to resolve for the out first and most principal, allowing Hansen to attain to prolong Oklahoma’s lead to 5-2.

However Florida Negate again utilized stress on Maxwell in the fourth. 

The visitors set apart a pair on without a outs for the high of the lineup, but Brito made an fabulous purchase to payment Kaley Mudge’s failed bunt are trying and switch a double play relief first and most principal. 

Alyssa. Brito.@alyss_33 turns two on the popped-up bunt!#ChampionshipMindset | 📺 ESPN2

— Oklahoma Softball (@OU_Softball) May maybe presumably maybe also 24, 2024

“Our protection is so locked down,” Gasso acknowledged. “They’d a likelihood to even are trying to attain on Jayda, and they held them up. They’ve been watching our protection play. We in point of fact wanna attain one thing we are in a position to to relief our pitchers bring collectively off the discipline and produce collectively relief in the swing. We work on it a lot, they’ll portray you. We attain prepare it a lot.”

With a fresh lease on life, Maxwell obtained out of the body to relief the three-escape lead intact. 

Brito’s first dwelling escape modified into once a line power, but her 2d modified into once a moonshot in the fourth inning. 

She clobbered Wilson’s 2-1 birth, sending a two-escape shot excessive up the bleachers in left-heart discipline to prolong the profit to 7-2.

The OU third baseman is embracing her closing weekend playing in Norman as she hopes to propel the group to the WCWS.

“It’s the closing time we bring collectively to play at Admire’s Area collectively so for me, I’m fair correct taking half in the moments,” Brito acknowledged. “Searching to purchase that into – with any luck, we are in a position to bring collectively there next week and purchase it day-to-day and pitch by pitch and being veil in all americans’s at-bats. Correct doing it collectively.”

𝐁𝐑𝐈𝐓𝐎 💣 𝐗 ✌️@alyss_33 crushes a two-escape blast for her third multi-dwelling escape sport of the season!#ChampionshipMindset

— Oklahoma Softball (@OU_Softball) May maybe presumably maybe also 24, 2024

Two batters later, Hansen beaten a two-escape shot of her discover, though she needed to wait by a overview to glance if Pickering left first unfortunate early to verify the bomb. 

The decision stood, and Cydney Sanders pushed the sport to escape-rule territory with an RBI-single to set apart OU on high 10-2. 

Maxwell modified into once sent relief into the circle to shut the sport in the fifth, though she first and most principal did not glance esteem she modified into once going to head the distance. She walked the first two batters of the inning, and though she battled relief to file two outs, Jahni Kerr delivered a two-out, RBI-single to slash the deficit to 10-3 and prolong the sport into the bottom of the fifth.

Oklahoma loaded the bases for Pickering with one out, most effective needing one escape to cease the sport with a escape-rule. With the depend tubby, the freshman drew a run to seal the purchase.

Brito accomplished the evening a truly most attention-grabbing 3-for-3 with three RBIs and a run, Pickering went 2-for-2 on the plate and Jennings ended the evening 1-for-3 with the lone RBI and a run. 

Maxwell allowed four hits and walked six Seminole batters, but ended the evening with three strikeouts and the purchase.

“Kelly fought her rear cease off for this. That’s a elaborate-hitting group,” Gasso acknowledged. “… The message (to her) is fight by it on yarn of all of us bear to be taught to attain that… If we bring collectively to the World Series you’ve obtained to fight by in point of fact complicated cases.

“…  For Kelly to discontinuance by that and fight by that and throw over 100 pitches, that’s a victory.”

Oklahoma can clinch a return to the WCWS with a victory over Florida Negate on Friday at 7 p.m. at Admire’s Area.

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