OU Sooners roar past Texas Longhorns for WCWS finals sweep, sixth NCAA softball title

Come at the Queens, you best not miss.

Texas had its early chances to derail the coronation of OU, looking to win the Women’s College World Series for the second consecutive season and the sixth time in the program’s history.

But the Longhorns early shot — two first-inning runs — was nothing more than a minor annoyance to the Sooners, who eventually came out swinging and there was little Texas could do to slow the inevitable.

OU blasted the Longhorns 10-5 to sweep the WCWS championship series on Thursday night at USA Softball Hall of Fame Stadium.

The Sooners finished the season 59-3, one of the most dominating seasons in NCAA softball history.

For three innings, it looked like Texas might just force a Game 3.

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They were giving OU starter Jordy Bahl fits at the plate and despite a string of leadoff hitters reaching base for the Sooners, OU’s powerful bats couldn’t find a way to string anything more together on Longhorns’ starter Estelle Czech.

After Wednesday’s 16-1 drubbing by OU, Texas coach Mike White said holding the Sooners’ offense in check was a virtual impossibility.

“We’ve got to score runs to beat them,” White said. “They’re going to put up some numbers, four or five, we got to find a way to score seven. That’s the way it is, you know.”

The Longhorns looked up to the challenge early, smacking the ball around the park when Bahl wasn’t walking Texas hitters.

Janae Jefferson led off the bottom of the first with a hard hit up the middle before Mia Scott followed with one to left.

After a walk, Alyssa Washington nearly drove the ball out of the park but instead wound up with a sacrifice fly.

Mary Iakopo put a charge into one herself, driving one to the furthest reaches of center field before Jayda Coleman leapt and hauled it in for the second out on another sacrifice fly that put the Longhorns up 2-0.

Courtney Day, one of the stars of the WCWS for the Longhorns, then got into one even more, this time to the left side of center.

But Coleman tracked it down as well, leaping even higher and robbing Day of a home run that would’ve put the Longhorns up 5-0.

Instead, the OU deficit was just two.

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Oklahoma’s Jayda Coleman (24) leaps over the wall to make a catch for an out in the first inning of the second game of the championship series in the Women’s College World Series between the University of Oklahoma Sooners (OU) and the Texas Longhorns at USA Softball Hall of Fame Stadium in Oklahoma City, Thursday, June 9, 2022.

Bahl allowed two runners in the second and one in the third — erased on a double play that began with Sooners’ shortstop Grace Lyons’ diving snap — before she settled in.

It took OU a little longer to get much offensively.

The Sooners put the leadoff hitter on in each of the first three innings but couldn’t get anything going on Texas’ Estelle Czech.

But then the floodgates opened.

OU tied it up in the fourth after Alyssa Brito started off with a double before an error allowed Brito to come around to score. Taylon Snow then tied it with an RBI single.

In the fifth, it was the bottom of OU’s order getting it done once against after Tiare Jennings singled and Lyons was hit by a pitch.

Brito gave the Sooners their first lead with an RBI double and Kinzie Hansen followed with a three-run homer to put OU up 6-2.

The Sooners then erased all chances of a Friday game with four more in the sixth, the big blow a three-run homer by Lyons.

Then it was just a matter of counting the outs.

Bahl made it through the first four innings, allowing just two hits after the first two batters touched her up.

Then Nicole May came on to bring the game into the seventh, allowing just one hit.

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Oklahoma's Jayda Coleman (24) celebrates after a single in the first inning of the second game of the championship series in the Women's College World Series between the University of Oklahomaers (OU) and the Texas Longhorns at USA Softball Hall of Fame Stadium in Oklahoma City, Thursday, June 9, 2022.

Oklahoma’s Jayda Coleman (24) celebrates after a single in the first inning of the second game of the championship series in the Women’s College World Series between the University of Oklahomaers (OU) and the Texas Longhorns at USA Softball Hall of Fame Stadium in Oklahoma City, Thursday, June 9, 2022.

The bottom of the seventh inning was all about the senior sendoffs. Designated player Jocelyn Alo — the all-time career home run hitter in NCAA history — was out in left field and made the first two outs of the innings, catching pop flies. She was lifted with two outs and hugged teammates on her way off the field.

An out earlier, Sooners coach Patty Gasso brought on Hope Trautwein to finish it off in the circle.

Trautwein, who grew up a Texas fan in an Austin suburb, is the long senior among OU’s three primary pitchers and had emerged as one of the stars of the WCWS.

Trautwein was touched up by Scott for a three-run home run, but that just delayed the inevitable.

Fans around the park held up their phones with every two-out pitch to capture the celebration.

It eventually came, after a walk, when Washington grounded softly to Jennings at second. By the time Jennings’ throw hit Snow’s glove, the celebration was getting kicked off around the field.

In the sweep of the best-of-three championship series, OU outscored Texas 26-6.

In six games in the WCWS, the Sooners outscored opponents 64-17.

No team had ever scored more than 49 runs in the WCWS. No team other than OU’s championship team last season had ever scored more than 47.

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WCWS championship series schedule

Best-of-three series between OU and Texas:

Game 1: Oklahoma 16, Texas 1

Game 2: Oklahoma 10, Texas 5

More: How many championships has OU softball won? Sooners add to their WCWS tally

Previous NCAA softball champions

2021: Oklahoma (56-4)

2020: Canceled due to pandemic

2019: UCLA (56-6)

2018: Florida State (58-12)

2017: Oklahoma (61-9)

2016: Oklahoma (57-8)

2015: Florida (60-7)

2014: Florida (12-55)

2013: Oklahoma (57-4)

2012: Alabama (60-8)

2011: Arizona State (60-6)

2010: UCLA (50-14-1)

2009: Washington (51-12)

2008: Arizona State (66-5)

2007: Arizona (50-14-1)

2006: Arizona (54-11)

2005: Michigan (65-7)

2004: UCLA (47-9)

2003: UCLA (54-7)

2002: California (56-19)

2001: Arizona (65-4)

2000: Oklahoma (66-8)

1999: UCLA (63-6)

1998: Fresno State (52-11)

1997: Arizona State (61-5)

1996: Arizona (58-9)

1995: UCLA (50-6)

1994: Arizona (64-3)

1993: Arizona (44-8)

1992: UCLA (54-2)

1991: Arizona (56-16)

1990: UCLA (62-7)

1989: UCLA (48-4)

1988: UCLA (53-8)

1987: Texas A&M (56-8)

1986: Cal State Fullerton (57-9-1)

1985: UCLA (41-9)

1984: UCLA (45-6-1)

1983: Texas A&M (41-11)

1982: UCLA (33-7-2)

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

This article originally appeared on Oklahoman: OU Sooners beat Texas Longhorns, sixth win NCAA softball WCWS title