OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. – A three-run home run from Karli Petty propelled the No. 7-seeded Oklahoma State softball team to a 4-2 victory over Arizona in its first game of the 2022 NCAA Women’s College World Series on Thursday at Hall of Fame Stadium in Oklahoma City.
With the win, OSU improved to 47-12 this season and advanced to the winner’s bracket of the WCWS.
Kelly Maxwell (20-4) tallied her 15th double-digit strikeout game of the year with 14 against the Wildcats to earn the win in the circle. She recorded her 19th complete game of the season, allowing just two runs on five hits. The 14 strikeouts marked a season high for Arizona this year.
Her 14-strikeout night elevated her season total to 293, which ranks fourth in program history. It was the 15th time this season Maxwell recorded a double-digit strikeout performance out of her 26 starts (57 percent) this season.
The Cowgirls got on the board first in the fourth inning when Brianna Evans scored on Sydney Pennington’s one-out single to put OSU on top, 1-0. Evans pinch ran for Miranda Elish, who previously doubled the at-bat prior.
A two-run home run from Sharlize Palacios later gave the Wildcats a 2-1 lead in the fifth.
In the bottom of the sixth inning, Elish drew a walk before Pennington’s single and an Arizona error pushed runners to second and third with no outs. The next OSU batter, Petty, hit a three-run home run to center field – her fifth of the season – to give the Cowgirls a 4-2 lead that they wouldn’t surrender.
The Wildcats opened the seventh with a single up the middle before Maxwell closed out the game with three-straight strikeouts.
Up next, OSU takes on 14th-seeded Florida on Saturday at 6 p.m. CT. The contest is set to be televised on ESPN.
For season-long coverage of Oklahoma State Softball, visit okstate.com and follow @CowgirlSB on Twitter and @osusoftball on Instagram.