NORMAN — Jordy Bahl enjoyed her first postseason appearance at Marita Hynes Field.
The Oklahoma pitcher dominated the 2022 regular season, but was limited in last year’s NCAA Tournament by an arm injury.
This year, the flame-throwing right-hander wasted no time making her presence felt.
Bahl retired the first nine Missouri batters of the game, ensuring the Tigers couldn’t work their way into the contest.
Oklahoma’s offense backed their pitcher, blasting past their former Big 12 foes 11-0 in six innings to advance to Sunday’s Regional Final.
The win also moved OU’s win streak to 45 games, and the Sooners are 52-1 on the year.
Missouri dropped to the loser’s bracket and fell to 34-10-1 overall.
Though Bahl was locked in early, it was actually Oklahoma’s offense that struck first.
Playing as the road team in their home ballpark, Sooner batters Jayda Coleman drew a leadoff walk and Haley Lee singled to put immediate pressure on the Tigers.
First baseman Cydney Sanders opened the scoring, roping a single down the left field line to clear the bases and put OU up 2-0.
Bahl needed just 13 pitches to work through the bottom half of the first, and then she needed just six pitches to get out of the second inning.
Oklahoma added to end in the third.
With one out, Lee doubled to bring Coleman home for her second run of the game.
In the next at-bat, catcher Kinzie Hansen brought Lee home.
Hansen blasted the 1-0 delivery into the top row of the stands in left center field, putting the Sooners up 5-0 with her 11th home run of the year.
OU got aggressive in the fourth inning to try and push the lead to six.
Rylie Boone stole second to put runners on second and third for Coleman.
The star center fielder made good contact, but flew out to right field.
Oklahoma coach Patty Gasso decided to test the arm of Missouri’s Payton Jackson, directing Alyssa Brito home, but Jackson stood tall.
She fired in a throw on target to catcher Julia Crenshaw, easily beating Brito’s slide to end the inning.
Trying to build on the momentum of the defensive play, Missouri finally got a baserunner.
Tigers shortstop Jenna Laird drew a leadoff walk to end Bahl’s perfect game bid.
Bahl responded with a strikeout, but Kara Daly singled back up the middle to put runners on the corners for Missouri.
Unbothered, Bahl relied on sure-handed defensive play from Brito at third base before firing her sixth strikeout of the day to work out of the jam.
Lee continued her stellar day with alert base running in the fifth.
She swiped both third base and home plate on a pair of wild pitches from Missouri reliever Megan Schumacher, putting the Sooners up 6-0.
As it turned out, the result would have been the same if Lee had stayed parked on second base. Sanders launched the next pitch over the scoreboard toward Home Run Village behind Marita Hynes Field.
Tiare Jennings added an RBI on a sacrifice fly in the top of the sixth, putting a run-rule into play. Quincee Lilio later drew a two-out, bases loaded walk and Grace Green delivered two more RBIs to balloon the lead to 11-0.
Gasso turned to true freshman Kierston Deal to close out the win in the bottom of the sixth.
Deal struck out a pair before inducing a popup to end the contest.
The Sooners will now sit tight while the loser’s bracket works itself out.
Oklahoma will meet whoever emerges tomorrow at 1 p.m. at Marita Hynes Field, and OU will need just one win to advance to next weekend’s Super Regionals.