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Oklahoma State Sweeps Oregon in Super Regional, Advances to WCWS For Fourth-Straight Year

STILLWATER – The stars showed up for Oklahoma State on Friday. 

Kelly Maxwell’s complete-game shutout and Kiley Naomi’s 4-for-4 day was all the 6-seeded Cowgirls needed as it took the 9-0 win over Oregon, advancing to the Women’s College World Series for the fourth consecutive year.

“This team is just in a different place right now,” OSU coach Kenny Gajewski said. “Obviously we are playing well and it is fun to see.” 

OSU was in a downward spiral two weeks ago coming off its loss to Kansas in the first round of the Big 12 Tournament. Now, Oklahoma State is off to Oklahoma City once again. Even through all that adversity, Gajewski was confident the Cowgirls could still get back to Hall of Fame Stadium.

“I didn’t have any doubt to be honest. I’ve never had a doubt, even during the streak,” Gajewski said. “We have played error-free so far this postseason. Feels pretty good to be going to number four.”

Maxwell retired the first 19 batters on Friday, before giving up a one-out single in the seventh inning to end her perfect game bid. Prior to that Oregon single in the seventh, Lexi Kilfoyl and Maxwell had retired 36 straight Oregon batters since game one on Thursday where Kilfoyl retired the last 17 batters.  

“I could tell from the first (inning) that Kelly’s stuff was good,” Gajewski said. “I didn’t know it was gonna be that good, but it was incredible.” 

The All-Big 12 First Team honoree was as advertised, giving up no runs on two hits with eight strikeouts. 

“I just wanted to go out there and pound the zone,” Maxwell said. “Let my defense work behind me, and let the offense get ahead early. It’s always nice to pitch whenever you have a lead.”  

After scoring only one run in the first four innings, the Cowgirls exploded for six runs in the fifth, including a three-run home run from Naomi. It was her 47th home run of her career, tying Sydney Pennington for the most home runs in program history. 

Naomi was firing on all cylinders, notching four RBIs on Friday. Her performance helped secure OSU as one of the eight teams in Oklahoma City.

“I just go up there and put good swings on good pitches and let the results happen,” Naomi said. “Regardless if it’s a home run or not, I’m just going out there looking for good pitches.”  

Rachel Becker set the tone in the first inning, crushing a ball to the left field wall, resulting in a lead-off double and a great start for the Cowgirls. Chyenne Factor got her over to third off her sacrifice bunt, setting up an early spot for Naomi.

Naomi delivered, hitting a RBI-single, scoring Becker and giving OSU the momentum and the early 1-0 lead. 

Left fielder Kai Luschar looked to get on base to start the first for the Ducks, hitting a liner up the middle, but Naomi’s glove made sure that didn’t happen as she made a diving catch to prevent the hot start from Luschar and the Ducks offense.

Both teams went stagnant in the next three innings, but Oklahoma State changed that narrative in the fifth inning. 

Morgynn Wynne started it off with a single to left field. Tallen Edwards followed that up with a single of her own, setting up runners on first and second for Taylor Tuck.

Tuck did her job, laying down a sacrifice bunt, advancing the runners over to second and third, bringing up pinch-hitter Katie Lott with one out. 

Lott drove a runner home one home off her fielder’s choice as pinch-runner Haidyn Sokoloski was originally called out at home, but Sokoloski was awarded home after Oregon catcher Terra McGowan was called for obstruction, doubling the OSU lead. 

Becker added to the lead, hitting a two-RBI single through the right side of the infield, scoring Megan Bloodworth and Edwards and pushing the Cowgirl lead to 4-0.

After Factor got hit by a pitch, Naomi blew the game wide open, hitting a three-run shot over the left field wall. It was her 14th of the season and it gave Oklahoma State a 7-0 lead. 

Pinch-hitter Claire Timm got in on the action as she smoked a ball up the middle for a single. After Edwards flew out to left field, Tuck singled to left field, setting up another huge spot for Oklahoma State with runners on first and second with one away. 

Timm and pinch-runner Sophia Page both advanced on a wild pitch from Morgan Scott. Becker ended up drawing a walk, bringing up a bases-loaded opportunity for Factor. 

Factor didn’t come through as she struck out, ending what was a big opportunity to get more runs for the Cowgirl offense. 

Carwile continued the OSU onslaught in the seventh with her RBI-double, scoring Naomi and increasing the lead to 8-0. 

The double party continued in the seventh as Wynne hit OSU’s third straight double, scoring Carwile and making it 9-0 Oklahoma State. 

Oregon showed whatever life it had left in the seventh, getting runners on first and second with one away, but Maxwell finished off the Ducks, giving OSU the victory.

OSU has advanced to the WCWS, and will take on Florida State on Thursday at Hall of Fame Stadium in Oklahoma City.