Nobody will want to face the Cowgirls if they continue to play like this. Oklahoma State’s softball team has a lineup littered with quality hitters; they possess a mix of power, technique and some good eyes at the plate.
However, the pitching staff stole the spotlight this weekend, which is saying a lot. The Cowgirls have won 10 games in a row and improved their record to 19-6 after their success in the OSU Hall of Fame Classic in Oklahoma City.
The Cowgirls scored at least seven runs in four of five games, and two of those games were run-rule victories. They squeaked out a 2-0 victory against Drake, but they were facing an outstanding pitcher in Nicole Newman.
Here’s what we learned this weekend in Oklahoma City.
The pitching staff was lights out
The Cowgirls combined to pitch 31 innings, and they allowed just two earned runs. That’s good for an ERA of 0.45. Coach Kenny Gajewski didn’t need to reach into his bullpen, as all starting pitchers earned complete games. Pitchers also combined to strike out 20 while walking only five, and Logan Simunek pitched a one-hitter against UConn on Saturday. She ranks fourth in the nation with a 0.24 ERA.
Samantha Clakely and Emmie Robertson each pitched seven-inning shutouts on Friday to begin the weekend.
Vanessa Shippy is cementing herself as one of the nation’s greatest players
Shippy is off to a hell of a start during her senior season. In fact, she leads not only the Big 12 but all of college softball in batting average (.561), on-base percentage (.717), runs (37) and walks (29).
Some of that credit goes to the rest of OSU’s lineup, but Shippy is definitely doing something special this season. Below are her numbers from this weekend, which earned Big 12 Player of the Week honors.
5-for-7, 2 doubles, 1 home run, 4 RBI, 10 walks, 9 runs, 2 stolen bases.
Chelsea Alexander shows promise in left field
Alexander had only two starts entering this weekend, but she started the final three contests in OKC. She came through with a clutch double in the fifth inning against Drake and scored the first run of the game.
Alexander finished the weekend with three runs, three hits and four RBIs. Gajewski said he turned to one of his assistant coaches in the dugout and said he was watching her grow up right in front of his eyes. After the game against Drake, Alexander said she has grown a lot since the beginning of the season. She’ll have more chances to impress if Gajewski continues to give her the nod in left field.