Oklahoma softball rewind: Sooners’ 25-0 record a program first

Mar 7, 2020; Winter Haven, FL, USA; During THE Spring Games at DiamondPlex Softball Complex. Mandatory Credit: Mike Watters-USA TODAY Sports
Mar 7, 2020; Winter Haven, FL, USA; During THE Spring Games at DiamondPlex Softball Complex. Mandatory Credit: Mike Watters-USA TODAY Sports /

The top-ranked Oklahoma softball team opened its Big 12 season over the weekend, sweeping three games from Iowa State and setting a new all-time record in the process.

The Sooners’ series sweep improved their record to a program-best 25-0 to start the season. They also extended their active consecutive-games win streak to 32 and Big 12 regular-season unbeaten streak to 46 games. OU has now won 55 consecutive Big 12 series, compiling a record of 51-0-4 over that time.

The first two games in the weekend series at Iowa State were somewhat pedestrian contests by Sooner softball standards this season. The Sooners won the series opener on Friday, 9-7, with senior outfielder Jocelyn Alo accounting for five of the OU runs on a pair of home runs, improving her NCAA-leading total to 21.

Left-handed senior starter Giselle Juarez pitched a seven-inning complete game, allowing seven runs on five hits and striking out 11 batters to record her eighth win without a loss.

OU got off to a fast start in the second game of the series at Iowa State, scoring twice in the first and three more times in the second to take a 5-0 lead and were never headed from there. Senior Lynnsie Elam and Grace Green hit home runs in the game for the Sooners. Green’s fence-clearing blast was a grand slam and came in a pinch-hitting role.

Senior right-hander Shannon Saile started and pitched 4.2 innings, giving up just two runs on the same number of hits and striking out 11. Olivia Rains came on in relief and pitched the final 1.1 innings for the Sooners. The game was stopped after six innings by run-rule. It was Oklahoma’s 17th win of the season by run-rule.

The series finale on Sunday was more typical of an OU softball game this season. The Sooners opened with 10 runs in the first three innings for a 10-2 lead and then doubled up on that with a 10-spot in the fourth on the way to a 22-2 blowout of Iowa State (22-8, 0-3).

Oklahoma pounded out 18 hits off of three Iowa State pitchers, including home runs by freshman Tiare Jennings and Jayda Coleman and sophomore Kinzie Hansen. Jennings and Coleman both were three for five in the game. Jennings drove in six runs, four coming on a third-inning grand slam, her 15th long ball of the season. Hansen’s home run was her 14th of the season. She also collected three RBI.

Another Sooner freshman, right-handed starter Nicole May recorded her 10th win of the season without a loss in the OU win on Sunday. In 4.0 innings she allowed two runs on two hits and struck out six.

Oklahoma is back home this week, hosting Kansas (8-7, 1-2) over the weekend in the Sooners’ Big 12 home opener.