Advertisement

A long time coming: No. 5 Texas wins series over No. 1 Oklahoma for 1st time in 15 years

AUSTIN (KXAN) — For the first time since 2009, the Texas Longhorns have won a softball series over the Oklahoma Sooners.

Longhorns freshman Kaite Stewart blasted a 2-run home run off Oklahoma’s Kelly Maxwell in the fourth inning and then Texas hung on for a 2-1 win Sunday at McCombs Field.

PREVIOUS GAME: Longhorns knock off Oklahoma 2-1, snaps Sooners’ 40-game Big 12 winning streak

It was the second 2-1 win in as many games for the Longhorns after dropping the first game of the series 5-2 on Friday.

“It’s big for our program,” Longhorns head coach Mike White said. “I think we learned a lot this weekend about ourselves, and I’m very proud of our pitching and defense. You talk about winning championships with pitching and defense, and that really showed through today.”

Oklahoma took a 1-0 lead in the third inning after an Ella Parker solo home run off Texas starting pitcher Teagan Kavan. Estelle Czech relieved Kavan with two outs in the fourth inning and didn’t allow a run the rest of the way.

AUSTIN, TX – APRIL 07: Texas catcher Katie Stewart (20) screams and celebrates a double play during the Big 12 college softball game between Texas Longhorns and Oklahoma Sooners on April 7, 2024, at Red & Charline McCombs Field in Austin, TX. (Photo by David Buono/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
AUSTIN, TX – APRIL 07: Texas catcher Katie Stewart (20) screams and celebrates a double play during the Big 12 college softball game between Texas Longhorns and Oklahoma Sooners on April 7, 2024, at Red & Charline McCombs Field in Austin, TX. (Photo by David Buono/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Coming into the series, Oklahoma was the nation’s best hitting team with a .397 batting average and Texas was No. 2 with a .377 average. The Sooners outhit the Longhorns 6-3 but left eight runners on and went 0 for 5 with runners in scoring position.

Stewart’s home run came on a 1-1 pitch from Maxwell with two outs. Maxwell hit Viviana Martinez in the elbow to put her on, setting the stage for Stewart’s clutch hit. It was almost like she was due for a long ball after breaking two windows across the street during batting practices throughout the weekend.

She said she had “mixed feelings” when the ball came off her bat whether she thought she got all of it, but the smooth follow-through followed by a bat drop into the home run trot suggested otherwise. Stewart’s hit glanced off some scaffolding and a fan sitting on it beyond the left field fence and bounced back onto the field.

“I just didn’t want to make the moment bigger than it was,” Stewart said. “As a freshman, this is a different kind of environment, so slowing down the moment and seeing the pitch I wanted was it.”

The Longhorns turned a huge double play in the sixth inning to get out of a jam. After Sooners first baseman Cydney Sanders singled with one out, Alynah Torres drilled a line drive that Stewart snagged just off of first base and then touched the bag to double off pinch runner Maya Bland, ending the inning.

Czech said the environment for the entire weekend was great, and it was the loudest she’d ever heard the fans at McCombs Field. Nearly 6,000 fans went through the turnstiles this weekend.

“Our fans really brought it,” Czech said. “It all came together.”

Texas (31-6, 11-4 Big 12) hosts No. 23 Texas State at 4:30 p.m. Wednesday. Oklahoma (35-3, 13-2) travels to play Wichita State on Tuesday.

For the latest news, weather, sports, and streaming video, head to KXAN Austin.