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OSU is Looking To be Their ‘Best Self’ This Week Against the Sooners

Oklahoma State knows that in order for them to win four games this week, they have to keep doing what they have been doing this whole year. 

“Just playing the way that we play,” coach Kenny Gajewski said. “We need to be doing things offensively, playing catch and hitting with runners on base. Those are the things that win games, and we just need to continue that. We haven’t won them all, but we’ve done that the whole year.”

The No. 7 Cowgirls are set to finish off Big 12 play in a weekend series against top-ranked Oklahoma. 

“I’m super excited to compete against them (Oklahoma) because I mean, everyone looks forward to this weekend,” right-handed pitcher Lexi Kilfoyl said. “It’s the last series before the postseason, so I’m excited to see us compete.”

OSU’s offense came back around this past week as it scored 21 runs in the series against Texas Tech, including two run-rule victories against the Red Raiders. 

One of the notable faces this past weekend was second baseman Rachel Becker. Becker broke Vanessa Shippy’s consecutive on-base record on Saturday after reaching on-base for 49 consecutive games. 

“That’s actually really impressive because as a leadoff batter, you already have so much pressure on you,” shortstop Kiley Naomi said. “Hopefully she could just continue to do what she’s been doing throughout the season because she’s been really good for us.”

OU brings the punch offensively, as they are the top team in the country in batting average, doubles per game and home runs per game. 

“Their offense is still that crazy, powerful offense,” Gajewski said. “There is a reason they’ve got one or two losses, they’re really good and they’re very well coached” 

OU isn’t just a one man show. The Sooners defense lead the country in ERA and fielding percentage. 

“They are starting to pitch really well since the conference has gone on,” Gajewski said. “Think they’re pitching better than they pitched the whole year. 

OSU has a lot of players that haven’t experienced a series against the Sooners. The Cowgirls have 14 newcomers who haven’t played OU in their careers, but Gajewski isn’t too worried about how those players will perform in the series.

“I think the bigger you make it, it just builds up for these kids,” Gajewski said. “I need them to be their best self, and not try to be somebody that they aren’t. 

This might be the last Bedlam series in Stillwater. With OU leaving the conference after the 2023-24 season, Bedlam is up in the air for most of the sports, including softball. 

“I tried to tell them that we want to play, but I don’t have very good luck getting responses,” Gajewski said. “I don’t know how that looks. I don’t know if that’s, you know, we can play three games and it’s one, one and one or if it’s a weekend. I think it would be good for both teams.”

OU is not the only opponent for the Cowgirls this week. OSU will go up against North Texas on Wednesday. 

“The next game is the most important game, and that is North Texas,” Gajewski said. “We are very aware that we got that game.”

Oklahoma State will play North Texas on Wednesday at 6 p.m. at Lovelace Stadium before game one of the series against the Sooners on Friday at 6 p.m. at Cowgirl Stadium. Friday’s game can be seen on ESPN2.