After securing the program’s first NCAA super regional berth since 2011, the Oklahoma State softball team didn’t go crazy with excitement.
The 13th-seeded Cowgirls celebrated modestly when they defeated Tulsa on Saturday for a sweep in regional play, continuing what has been a memorable season for OSU.
“I had told them in our huddle that we are not done,” coach Kenny Gajewski said. “I think we are really good and we’ve been saying that since before the season. It’s just been a joy to watch this team grow and learn how to win.”
The road from Stillwater to Oklahoma City, site of the Women’s College World Series, will have to go through Tallahassee, Florida. Next up for the Cowgirls is a best-of-three series against defending national champion Florida State, the No. 4 overall seed.
“I’ve got a lot of respect for the staff and what they’ve done here, but we come in here with high hopes,” Gajewski said during a news conference Wednesday in Florida. “We feel like we’re a team that’s as good as anybody in the country and we’re looking forward to a chance to prove that. We’re led by kind of a unique mixture of seniors and freshmen and a couple of sophomores.
“Our program does things in a way that some people love and some people don’t, and we’re going to stay true to who we are and what we do. We’re proud to represent OSU, our fans, and our school, and we’re looking forward to playing.”
Among the players propelling OSU (42-14) is senior Samantha Show, a Texas A&M transfer who has pitched 68 of 95 innings against top-15 opponents and leads the team with 18 home runs. She has gone viral because of her bat flips, but she’s also been a catalyst for the Cowgirls all season.
“I think we feed off her, especially on the mound,” teammate Madi Sue Montgomery said. “When she strikes someone out, she’s fist-pumping and hitting her glove. We just feed off of her energy, for sure.”
With Show and Montgomery and a variety of other playmakers, OSU has delivered dramatic results, coming from behind to win 16 games, including six against ranked competition.
“They’re tough,” Gajewski said. “They don’t ever think that they’re out of any game and I think that’s why we’ve been able to come back and continue to do that, even if we get behind. We’re also a team that when we’ve scored five runs, we haven’t lost.
“We are just a program and a team that can win in a lot of ways. We don’t just rely on one thing. It’s not just home runs. It’s not strikeouts. We just kind of figure out ways.”