Softball powers past Oklahoma State, 4-2, setting up showdown for WCWS bid

29 May By
College World Series
Catcher Mary Iakopo drilled her 16th home run of the season to help lift the Longhorns over Oklahoma State, 4-2, in the NCAA Stillwater Super Regional; Texas and OSU will meet Sunday for a berth in the Women's College World Series (photo courtesy of texassports.com).

STILLWATER, Okla. — The No. 11/13 Texas softball team knocked off No. 7/5 Oklahoma State, 4-2, Saturday in the NCAA Stillwater Super Regional at Cowgirl Stadium to set up a winner-take-all rubber match Sunday afternoon, the winner of which will earn a spot in the Women’s College World Series.

Sunday’s game is scheduled 3:15 p.m., and will be broadcast on ESPN.

The Longhorns’ victory improved their record to 43-13, while Oklahoma State fell to 46-10.

Texas starter Shea O’Leary allowed three hits and a walk while striking out five, going the distance to pick up the win and improve her record to 16-5. OSU starter Kelly Maxwell (15-4) allowed seven hits and a pair of walks while striking out five over 5-1/3 innings in the loss.

The Cowgirls took a 1-0 lead when shortstop Kiley Naomi hit a solo home run to left.

The lead held up for two innings, until UT second baseman Janae Jefferson singled up the middle in the fifth to drive in shortstop McKenzie Parker with the tying run. 

Right fielder Jordyn Whitaker gave the Longhorns their first lead with a solo home run to left in the sixth inning. Three batters later, catcher Mary Iakopo provided the last offense the Horns would need when she drilled a two-run home run to right field, scoring designated player Taylor Ellsworth ahead of her. Iakopo’s home run was her 16th of the season, breaking the tie with center fielder Shannon Rhodes and tying her for the second-most home runs in a single season in program history (Lindsey Stephens hit 16 in 2014).

Oklahoma State third baseman Sydney Pennington drilled the game’s fourth home run in the seventh inning, a solo shot to left, to cut the deficit to 4-2, but the Cowgirls got no closer.

Jefferson was the only Longhorn with two of the Longhorns’ seven hits; she now is hitting .579 in six NCAA Tournament games. 

The comeback victory was UT’s 14th of the season.