NORMAN, Okla. – Oklahoma softball head coach Patty Gasso announced the addition of outfielder Tori Nirschl (NER-shull) Thursday. Nirschl spent her first two seasons at the University of Pittsburgh and will have two years of eligibility remaining with the Sooners.
“I am very excited to get an experienced athlete like Tori to join us for what we believe will be a very special season,” Gasso said. “Tori will fit in with this team in a fantastic way as she brings left-handed power.”
A native of Carlsbad, Calif., Nirschl is a two-time All-ACC Third Team selection and was named the Big East Rookie of the Year in 2013 as a freshman.
As a sophomore, she started all 44 games for the Panthers (34 in the outfield, 10 as the designated player) and led the squad in both runs scored (26) and walks (22). She hit .287 with a .403 on-base percentage and .527 slugging percentage and hit eight home runs, five doubles and a triple. She drove in 21 runs and stole seven bases in nine attempts.
Nirschl and the Panthers faced Oklahoma on Feb. 9 of last year with the Sooners prevailing 2-1. Nirschl started in left field and hit third, going 1-3 with a single off OU starter Kelsey Stevens.
“Having played against Tori while she was with Pitt, we are well aware of her abilities as an athlete,” Gasso added. “In the environment and atmosphere we have at OU, where she will be surrounded by great athletes every day, I believe that Tori can reach heights she hasn’t dreamed of.
“We’re really excited to be adding her, and we think she’ll be a great addition to our team and our success.”
The best performance of Nirschl’s 2014 season came March 29-30 against Virginia when she went 5-9 with two home runs, six RBI and five runs scored. Her three RBI in game two of the series tied a career high.
In her freshman campaign, Nirschl started all 48 games in the outfield and led the Panthers in nearly every offensive category, including at-bats (156), batting average (.333), hits (52), runs (35), triples (3), home runs (11), walks (20), slugging (.635) and on-base percentage (.417).
Of Nirschl’s 11 homers, two came against Canisius on March 16 in a game in which she was 2-4 with three RBI. She has three career three-hit games, including a 3-3 performance with a career-high four runs scored and three driven in versus Fordham on March 2.