Saile Throws One-Hitter, OU Run Rules SDSU
PHOENIX, Ariz. – In its opening weekend finale, the No. 4/4 Oklahoma softball team run ruled San Diego State 9-0 in five innings.
With the win, the Sooners completed a 5-0 performance at the GCU Kickoff. OU finished out the weekend with three consecutive run-rule victories.
Making her first start in the Crimson and Cream, junior Shannon Saile tossed a one-hit shutout. She fanned eight batters and walked two, earning her first win of the season.
At the plate, Oklahoma was led by Caleigh Clifton, who finished 3-for-4 with a pair of hits and one RBI. Freshman Grace Lyons drove in two runs and scored one, finishing 2-for-2. Sydney Romero went 2-for-3 with a pair of runs scored.
Clifton put Oklahoma on the board first, scoring on an Aztec error in the bottom of the first. Grace Green then hit a grounder to shortstop to give Romero the space to reach home.
In the second, the Sooners hit back-to-back home runs to double their lead. Lyons led off the inning with the first home run of her career. Clifton followed up with her second blast of the weekend.
It was the first time two OU players hit consecutive home runs since Shay Knighten and Nicole Pendley did so against Texas on April 29, 2018.
The Sooners moved into run-rule territory in the fourth, forcing three SDSU errors to bring five runs across. Jocelyn Alo, Romero, Falepolima Aviu, Green and Raegan Rogers all scored during the frame.
“I thought we got a little bit of a slow start, which is pretty typical of how we come out just because we are excited,” OU head coach Patty Gasso said of her team’s performance over the weekend. “To see these guys settle in was great to see. Our pitching staff was really on point. Good tag-teams all the way around. They did great jobs.
“Defensively, we need to sure some things up, but I’m not concerned about that,” she continued. “The offense top-to-bottom, from Clifton in the lead-off to Grace Lyons in the nine spot, everything in between was really effective. There’s still a lot of battles going on in positions, and they’re getting to fight it out while we’re actually in play, which is encouraging. I’m excited about it.”
Up next, the Sooners head to the inaugural St. Pete/Clearwater Elite Invitational in Clearwater, Fla., Feb. 14-16. Oklahoma is scheduled to face Kentucky, Notre Dame, Florida Atlantic, Florida State and Hofstra in the tournament.