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OU softball: 3 takeaways from Sooners’ 8-0 run-rule win over No. 16 Central Florida in Game 1 of NCAA Super Regionals

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Jocelyn Alo

Redshirt senior utility Jocelyn Alo celebrates her NCAA record 96th career home run during the game at Hawaii on March 12.

No. 1 Oklahoma (53-2) run-ruled No. 16 Central Florida (49-13) 8-0 in five innings during Game One of the NCAA Super Regionals in Norman on Friday, moving one win away from the Women’s College World Series.

Redshirt senior pitcher Hope Trautwein led the Sooners as she tossed a no-hitter and struck out two while walking just three. Redshirt senior utility Jocelyn Alo finished 1-for-3 at the plate with a home run and three RBIs.

Here are three takeaways from OU’s win:

Timely hits lead to early runs

Five of the Sooners’ eight runs came in the first two innings Friday. 

Sophomore utility Jayda Coleman scored OU’s only run in the first. In the second, redshirt senior utility​​ Taylon Snow and sophomore utility Alyssa Brito scored on a double by Coleman. Junior outfielder Riley Boone and Coleman scored as well, as Alo blasted a three-run shot to deep center field. 

“I’m proud of the way we came out. We scored early and kept applying pressure,” OU coach Patty Gasso said. “Throughout the lineup, there were timely hits, but there were some really well executed things that didn't show up in the box score that were really important to us.”

Three of OU’s six hits went for extra bases. Along with Coleman’s double, senior infielder Grace Lyons and redshirt senior infielder Jana Johns also recorded extra base hits. 

“And, UCF, they came in ready to play. They're not afraid of the Sooners,” Gasso said. “They’re here to win and you could feel that from the start. There was a good press at times against us. Their pitchers are very good and we did a really nice job.” 

Coleman continues hot streak

Coleman is taking her game to another level this postseason. 

She stepped up to the plate with two outs and the bases loaded in the bottom of the second inning as the crowd of 1,659 were on their feet. Chants of “J Cole” filled the stadium as Coleman ripped a laser double to center field scoring two runs and giving the Sooners a 3-0 lead.

“Two out rallies are big, they're big and they create even more momentum,” Gasso said. “And what I feel is happening right now is this team is starting to peak and that is good news. … Two out rallies are clutch, lead-off hitters like Jayda Coleman are clutch, so we’re feeling it all around.”

Coleman finished the afternoon 2-for-3 with two RBIs and two runs scored, picking up where she left off after a stellar regional performance last weekend. She finished 6-for-9 with a home run, five RBIs and six runs scored in three games during regionals. 

While Coleman’s playmaking contributions show up in the statsheet, her fiery play style is felt throughout the team. Every time the Texas native gets on base, she screams toward the Sooners’ dugout and hypes up the next hitter, which is oftentimes Alo. 

“She’s just this firecracker, sparkler of a person,” Alo said. “She’ll get a walk and she’s hype, she’ll get a base hit and beat (the throw) out and she’s hyped. Anytime she gets on base she’s hype, so it’s been really nice to hit behind her.”

Alo’s last home games

This weekend’s super regional is the last time Alo will play at Marita Hynes Field.

The NCAA’s all-time leader in career home runs (116) has no remaining eligibility after this season. While her final game in front of Sooner fans is approaching, Alo is more focused on going out with a victory. 

“I’m definitely trying to soak it in, but at the same time just still trying to get the win,” Alo said. “I’d like to go out with a win in my last home game.”

Alo’s last game in Norman could come Saturday if OU wins, or Sunday if UCF forces a game three. The Hawaii native was selected as the No. 1 overall pick by the Smash It Sports Vipers in the inaugural 2022 Women’s Professional Fastpitch Draft on May 20.

Assistant sports editor

Colton Sulley is The Daily's assistant sports editor and covers OU football. He previously covered OU men's basketball, men's gymnastics and wrestling.

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