NORMAN, Okla. As part of its preseason conditioning tradition, the Oklahoma softball team held its fifth annual triathlon Friday afternoon on the OU Campus. Sixteen members of the squad swam a quarter of a mile and finished the triathlon with a a 15K bike ride and a 5K run that ended at home plate of the OU Softball Complex.
"I'm so proud of our girls' effort today," head coach Patty Gasso said. "They have been training and working so hard for this and I was pleased with the effort every single girl gave out there today. It really excites me for the spring because I know that I've got a team that will gut it out, no matter what the pain."
Making triathlon history, freshman Jessica Legendre became the first rookie to ever claim the triathlon title. Legendre finished the three-part race with a time of 1:17:04, besting the runner-up by more than two minutes.
"It was so motivating out there today," Legendre said. "I'm so excited to begin the next phase of our season after seeing our team out there and how hard we all worked. I'm proud to be a part of this team and I'm looking forward to the opportunities we will have in the spring.
In addition to the overall winner, an individual took home medalist honors in each category. Junior Stacia Aleman wrapped up the swim portion in a time of 9:43 while fellow junior Jade Prather posted the best time in the 5K run with a 22:46 mark. Veteran senior Nicole Denes out lasted everyone on the bike with a mark of 41:16.
Also, individual winners in each position category received recognition. Legendre, the overall winner, led the infield while Prather bested all outfielders with an overall mark of 1:17:21. Denes' time of 1:20:35 was the best among the pitchers while sophomore Susan Ogden beat out all catchers with a time of 1:24:09.
Following the two-hour triathlon, the Sooners held a barbecue in centerfield to celebrate. Next, a small awards ceremony was held in the pitching circle for the top three overall winners and individual winners in each category.
OU will conclude its home fall season Tuesday, Oct. 11 when it takes on Northwestern Oklahoma State University at the OU Softball Complex. First pitch is set for 4 p.m. Oklahoma will look to continue its flawless record in fall play (5-0).