• Covers the SEC.
  • Joined ESPN in 2012.
  • Graduate of Auburn University.

OKLAHOMA CITY — Oklahoma’s defense kept things close until the Sooners’ historic offense came to life late with a pair of back-breaking home runs to beat rival Texas 10-5 and claim its second consecutive national championship Thursday night.

The Sooners have now won six Women’s College World Series under head coach Patty Gasso, including four of the past seven. The 2020 postseason was canceled because of COVID-19.

Oklahoma set a record with 17 home runs during the WCWS, breaking the record of 15 it set last season.

It also set a record for total runs scored during the WCWS with 64.

But the Sooners’ bats were uncharacteristically quiet early on during the deciding game on Thursday night.

Facing elimination in Game 2 of the championship series, Texas jumped out a 2-0 lead in the first inning. But Oklahoma center fielder Jayda Coleman limited the damage when she ran and reached over the fence to bring back a would-be, two-run homer.

Not to be outdone, shortstop Grace Lyons had her own brilliant moment in the field when she plucked a ground ball deep in the hole to her right, dropped to one knee and flicked it to second base where Tiare Jennings tapped the bag and threw to first to complete the double play.

Then, after scratching together two runs and tying the game in the fourth inning, Oklahoma’s bats finally sprung to life.

An Alyssa Brito double down the left field line gave the Sooners a one-run lead.

Four pitches later, Kenzie Hansen hit a three-run homer over the left field fence to break the game open. It was Hansen’s first home run since April 16.

After a Jennings sacrifice fly in the top of the sixth, Grace Lyons hit a three-run homer to extend the lead to eight.

Oklahoma star and USA Softball Player of the Year Jocelyn Alo, the all-time leader in career home runs, had a rare night in which she didn’t send a ball over the fence or drive in a run.

But that did little to obscure a WCWS in which she set a record for home runs (5).

A fifth-year senior, Alo will play professionally but has not said whether that will be in the Women’s Professional Fastpitch league or Athletes Unlimited, where she was drafted No. 1 overall in May.

Source: Read Full Article