OCU, USAO among top three seeds in NAIA Softball World Series

Sooner Athletic Conference

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. – No. 1-ranked Science & Arts of Oklahoma drew the third seed, while Oklahoma City University holds the third seed in the NAIA Softball World Series at Killian Sports Complex.

USAO (56-2) picked up a first-round bye and plays its first World Series game 7 p.m. CDT Friday, May 24, while third-ranked Oklahoma City (57-6) faces sixth-ranked Valley City State (S.D.) at 7:30 p.m. CDT on Thursday, May 23.

Overall No. 1 seed Science and Arts of Oklahoma punched its ticket to the World Series for the fifth time in program history. The Drovers, winners of the NAIA Championship Opening Round Dodge City Bracket, have been ranked No. 1 in each of the last five Top 25 Polls to end the year. The Drovers are the defending national champions.

USAO upended Houston-Victoria 8-2 and 12-0 on Wednesday in Dodge City, Kan., to earn its World Series bid. Destinie Lookout blasted a grand slam to key the first victory, while Kamryn Pearn drove in four runs in the second game. Houston-Victoria edged USAO 1-0 on Tuesday in the Opening Round.

The Drovers reeled in their first national championship with a 4-1 triumph over Columbia (Mo.) on May 31, 2018 in Clermont, Fla. Emily Cerny nabbed the World Series most valuable player, collecting all four wins in the tournament.

Cerny, a sophomore from Newcastle, Okla., has been the NAIA’s dominant hurler this season. Cerny has gone 26-2 with a 0.51 earned run average, 15 shutouts and 266 strikeouts in 178.1 innings. She leads the NAIA in ERA while ranking in the top five in fewest runs allowed, least earned run runs, opponents’ batting average and average hits allowed. allowed USAO rates second in the NAIA this year with 580 hits, 452 runs scored, 396 RBIs, 1.22 ERA and .168 opponents’ batting average.

The Stars reached the NAIA Softball World Series for the 32nd time and the fourth consecutive year. OCU leads the NAIA in national championships (10), championship game appearances (15), World Series trips and World Series victories (127). The Stars opened the season ranked No. 1.

Oklahoma City owns national titles won in 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2007, 2016 and 2017. Phil McSpadden tops college softball in victories vs. four-year competition (1,723) with all 10 of OCU’s national crowns and 30 World Series appearances in 32 years as coach. The Stars tied for third place in the World Series last year.

OCU notched 50 wins for the 23rd time in program history, seventh consecutive year and 22nd time under McSpadden. The Stars reached 55 wins for the 13th time under McSpadden.

The Stars picked up their World Series berth by taking the NAIA Championship Opening Round Oklahoma City Bracket 16-2 over 16th-rated Olivet Nazarene (Ill.) on Wednesday at Ann Lacy Stadium.

Jaci Smith, a senior catcher from Godley, Texas, has been one of the most prolific players in college softball this year. She already owns NAIA single-season records for runs scored (112) and runs batted in (115). Smith has bashed 28 home runs, one shy of the OCU single-season mark set by Tracey Mosley in 1995. Smith has posted a .500 average, 96 hits, 25 doubles, two triples and 34 stolen bases. She leads the NAIA in seven statistical categories this season.

The Stars top the NAIA with 694 hits, 604 runs scored, 528 RBIs, 140 doubles, 155 stolen bases and 11.38 hits per game in 2019.

NAIANetwork.com, the NAIA’s official video-streaming platform of NAIA national championship events powered by Stretch Internet, will be broadcasting all 19 games of the NAIASoftball World Series. The All-World Series package can be purchased for $29.95 or the day package for $9.95. For more information, including how to register for an account, click here.

NAIA Softball World Series
At Springfield, Mo.
Killian Sports Complex
All Times CDT
Thursday, May 23
Game 1:
Mobile (Ala.) vs. Oregon Tech, 10 a.m.
Game 2: Georgia Gwinnett vs. Vanguard (Calif.), 1 p.m.
Game 3: Lindsey Wilson (Ky.) vs. Southern Oregon, 4 p.m.
Game 4: Oklahoma City vs. Valley City State (N.D.), 7:30 p.m.
Friday, May 24
Game 5:
Loser Game 2 vs. Loser Game 4, 10 a.m.
Game 6: Loser Game 1 vs. Loser Game 4, 1 p.m.
Game 7: Marian (Ind.) vs. Winner Game 1, 4 p.m.
Game 8: USAO vs. Winner Game 2, 7 p.m.
Saturday, May 25
Game 9:
Winner Game 5 vs. Loser Game 7, 10 a.m.
Game 10: Winner Game 6 vs. Loser 8, 1 p.m.
Game 11: Winner Game 3 vs. Winner Game 8, 4 p.m.
Game 12: Winner Game 4 vs. Winner Game 7, 7 p.m.
Monday, May 27
Game 13:
Winner Game 9 vs. Loser Game 11, 2 p.m.
Game 14: Winner Game 10 vs. Loser Game 12, 4:30 p.m.
Game 15: Winner Game 11 vs. Winner Game 12, 7 p.m.
Tuesday, May 28
Game 16:
Winner Game 13 vs. Winner Game 14, 4 p.m.
Game 17: Winner Game 16 vs. Loser Game 15, 7 p.m.
Wednesday, May 29
Game 18:
Winner Game 15 vs. Winner Game 17, 5 p.m.
Game 19: If necessary, 8 p.m.

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