Oklahoma softball: Sooners open season with doubleheader sweep


The three-time defending national championship Oklahoma softball team opened the 2024 season with a doubleheader sweep on Thursday in the Puerto Vallarta College Classic.

The Sooners defeated Utah State 13-0 in the opening game on Thursday. Freshman right fielder Kasidi Pickering blasted a first inning grand slam in her first collegiate at bat and had five RBI and Alyssa Brito and Kinzie Hansen hit solo home runs as Oklahoma cruised to a season-opening run-rule win,

Three Oklahoma pitchers held Utah State to just four hits. Senior Nicole May worked the first three innings and allowed no runs and one hit and struck out two. Kierston Deal and Wisconsin transfer Paytn Monticelli each worked one inning.

The Sooners scored four times in the first, five more in the second and four in the third to finish out the scoring. The win extended OU's NCAA record winning streak to 54 games.

In the second game, Oklahoma got a brilliant performance from Oklahoma State transfer Kelly Maxwell in her Sooner debut, and OU tallied three times in the third inning for the only scoring in the game as the Sooners knocked off No, 9 Duke 3-0. Maxwell started and went five innings, allowing just one hit and striking out two in picking up the win, Karlie Keeny finished up the final two innings and got the save.

Shortstop Tiare Jennings had three hits for Oklahoma, including a home run in the third inning to lead the Sooners offensively in the win over Duke. Kasidi Pickering had two hits, completing a three-for-four afternoon at the plate. Jennings and Pickering combined for five of the eight Oklahoma hits in the game.

The No. 1-ranked Sooners face another ranked team on Day 2 of the Puerto Vallarta Tournament on Friday when they go up against No. 10 Washington.