NORMAN – Senior pitcher Paige Parker threw a shutout and recorded a season-high 12 strikeouts against Saint Francis to earn her 100th career win as the No. 5/6 Oklahoma softball team run-ruled the Red Flash 8-0 in five innings on Wednesday night at Marita Hynes Field.
With 100 career victories, Parker sits fourth all-time in program history. Her dozen strikeouts over 5.0 innings brought her career total to 813, moving her into second place among Sooners all-time. Additionally, her 73 complete games rank sixth and her 31 shutouts are seventh most in school history.
“This is really a pretty cool night for me,” Parker said. “It’s pretty special to share this with my teammates because without them, there would be no wins.”
OU moved to 14-2 on the season with the victory while Saint Francis fell to 11-10. The win was the Sooners’ seventh shutout of the season and fifth run-rule victory.
“I think we started to figure it out when Paige came into the dugout fired up, and the team responded to her really well,” OU head coach Patty Gasso said. “When that happened, everything started to change… Everything started to fall into place afterward. I would attribute a lot of this not just to her performance but to her mentality with her team tonight. They got the message from her.”
The Sooners opened the scoring in the bottom of the third as Nicole Mendes and Jocelyn Alo both walked. Mendes advanced to third on a flyout and came home as Sydney Romero reached on an infield single.
Caleigh Clifton followed with her third home run of the season, a line drive blast to left center to drive in Alo and Romero, extending OU’s lead to 4-0.
In the fourth, Raegan Rogers led off with a walk and advanced on an infield single by Kelsey Arnold before moving to third on a fielder’s choice. Alo plated Rogers with an RBI single to shortstop.
Oklahoma sealed the victory with three runs in the bottom of the fifth. Romero led off with a solo homer to left field, her third blast of the year. OU loaded the bases as Clifton was hit by a pitch, Pendley singled and Rogers walked, and pinch hitter Kylie Lundberg drove in Clifton and Pendley with a two-run double to left field to close the game. The double was Lundberg’s first of the season.
Overall, Romero was 2-for-3 at the plate, driving in two runs and scoring two. Nicole Pendley was also 2-for-3, scoring one run and drilling a double in the second inning. Alo finished the night 2-for-2, recording one RBI, one run scored and one walk.
The Sooners conclude their 10-game homestand this weekend as they host Illinois State, Indiana and No. 18/17 South Carolina for the OG&E Tournament. OU will face Illinois State on Friday at 2:30 p.m. and on Sunday at 4 p.m., Indiana on Friday at 5 p.m. and South Carolina on Saturday at 5 p.m. and on Sunday at 1:30 p.m. All five games are scheduled to be broadcast on Fox Sports Oklahoma. General admission tickets are available and can be ordered online or by calling (405) 325-2424 or toll-free at (800) 456-GoOU.