Gasso earns 1,000 win as OU wins easily

Gasso earns 1,000 win as OU wins easily

“Gasso earns 1,000 win as OU wins easily” Written By Bill Plummer

NORMAN, Okla.– The picture wasn’t worth a 1,000 words, but wins, well, that’s a different story. Sunday afternoon (March 15th) the OU women’s softball team took a picture with head coach Patty Gasso. The picture was appropriate because the team had just given Gasso her 1,000 victory in her j20 plus year career at OU. Below the picture were the words, fight, faith and finish. Words that the OU softball team lives by.

The Sooners hit a program-record eight homers as it routed East Carolina (8-19) 23-1 in five innings at Marita Hynes Field to improve to 21-3.

Needing just 1,300 games, Gasso became the second-fastest coach in NCAA Division 1 history to reach 1,000 wins. Only Arizona’s Mike Candrea did it quicker, doing so in 1,191 games. Gasso is the 28th coach in NCAA softball history to reach that figure and the 17th to do it at the D-1 level. She is also one of 10 coaches to get 1,000 wins at one Division 1 school. Gasso overall has 1,162 wins and 358 losses in 25 years.

The eight home runs tied for the fourth most in a game in NCAA Division I history, and it was the 10th time a program reached that total. Five of the eight home runs came in the third inning alone, tying a DI mark done eight times previously.

Among the highlights in the game were two home runs each for senior Shelby Pendley and junior Kady Self. In addition, senior Lauren Chamberlain tallied the 86th home run of her career, breaking a tie for third place with two other hitters. She is now just four homers away from tying the all-time mark of 90.

The third inning alone produced a record-tying 17 runs for the Sooners. That ties a record set last year against Arkansas-Pine Bluff on Feb. 28 and goes down as a tie for the second-most in an inning in NCAA history.

Surprisingly, the Sooners actually trailed in the game. Ali Ramirez’s one-out, solo home run put the Pirates on the board 1-0 and marked the first time since a 6-5 loss to No. 8/7 Georgia on Feb. 20 that OU trailed, a span of 56 innings. The lead would not last long, though.

Two batters into the bottom of the second, junior Kady Self drove the first pitch she saw over the fences in center field just to the right of the batter’s eye. Her second home run of the year tied the game at 1-1.

The flood gates then opened with a five-homer, 17-run third inning.

Junior Erin Miller, freshman Paige Parker and senior Jessica Vest all hit run-scoring single to give the Sooners a 4-1 lead. A bases loaded hit by pitch recorded by Chamberlain made it 5-1. With the bases full, Pendley drilled the fourth grand slam of her career to the bleachers in left center, putting OU on top 9-1.

Two batters later, sophomore Macey Hatfield got in on the act with two-run shot to center field for her third homer of the year. Up 11-1, junior Leslie Miller pinch hit and brought home the 12th run of the game with a double. Fellow pinch hitting junior Paris Townsend followed with her first homer of the year, a towering three-run shot, to push the advantage to 15-1. The Sooners ended up going back-to-back as junior transfer Tori Nirschl hit her first home run as a Sooner with a solo blast to left center.

A walk to Chamberlain kept the inning going and Pendley capped the inning with her second homer of the frame. That brought her career total to 69, tying her for 14th place on the all-time home run list.

Leading 18-1 in the fourth, Oklahoma tacked on five more runs to tie a season high and tie for the third-most runs in a game in program history.

Self led off the inning with a solo home run to right on the first pitch of the frame. It was her career-high fourth hit of the game as she finished 4-4 with three runs scored and two solo home runs. Up next was freshman Destinie Lookout, who recorded her first career hit with a triple to the corner in right field. She came home when senior Jessica Vest doubled to right center. After an RBI double by Nirschl, Chamberlain connected on her two-run homer to close out the scoring for OU.

After the eight homers against East Carolina, OU continued its home run binge with four more in the second game Sunday in an 8-2 win over Iowa.
The Sooners hit four more home runs, including two by freshman Paige Parker, as No. 6 Oklahoma (22-3) extended its winning streak to 12 games with the win over Iowa (8-18) Sunday at Marita Hynes Field.

The four home runs continued a remarkable power streak for the Sooners. They’ve now hit at least four home runs in each of their last six games, including 21 over the weekend in four games against Iowa and East Carolina.

The win, which was the first in nine games to not come via run-rule, extended OU’s season-best win streak to 12 games. It’s the team’s longest such streak since winning 16 straight from April 19 – May 23 last season. OU has outscored the opposition 139-9 during the win streak.

Fastpitch Softball Videos On Demand

video on demand This is a new project I am creating at Fastpitch TV.

People spend thousands of dollars every year buying softball training videos. Most of them are only watched one, or twice then put away in a drawer never to be seen again.

Instead of paying as much as $49.00 to buy the video, why not rent the video?

All the videos in this section are available to watch online for 72 hours for only $9.95.

These videos are the property of the people that produced them. I am just partnering with the video creators in an attempt to bring you more fastpitch softball education in a more affordable manor.

Contact Gary@Fastpitch.TV if you have produced a fastpitch softball training video. You may be eligible for compensation.

See all the Videos On Demand: HittingPitchingFieldingBase Running

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The 2015 Spring Games

Spring-Games

“The 2015 Spring Games” written by Gary Leland.

I am in Clermont, Florida sitting on the runway waiting for my flight to take me back to Dallas, Texas.

I have spent the last week at The Spring Games hosted by PFX Athletics, and I thought I would share my thoughts about the event.

The Spring Games are a great event. Spread out over three weeks with over 300 teams, this is the largest and probably the best college softball event in the world.

You are probably thinking how does anyone handle a three week college tournament with over three hundred teams? Well I never said it was a tournament. The Spring Games are more like spring training. D2, and D3 teams get an opportunity to play and get prepared for the season. It is a ton of softball for sure.

The majority of the teams in this event are from the northern part of the country. They leave their softball fields that are covered with ice, and snow to come to Florida where it is in the mid 80s everyday.

If you ask any player what they like best about the Spring Games they will say “the fields are clear of snow”, Ask the coaches what they like, and you will hear the same thing. Yes just being able to play outside is good enough for many of these teams.

Thanks to Alison Strange and all of the PFX Staff this is a great event. I would actually have to say this is one of the best softball events I have ever been to, and I have been to a lot of them.

Alison and her staff not only run a great event, but they work with local businesses in Clermont to make your stay exciting 24-7.

The even helped Sarah Jones, a local performer put together a play about softball.This was probably the first theatre performance about softball ever written. It even had a song written by two time Olympian Dot Richardson. I loved the show, and would recommend seeing it to everyone.

With so many teams playing so many game you would expect to have problems. During my week visit I never saw any problems at all.

One thing I was impressed with was the way the City of Clermont supports the Spring Games. I interviewed the Mayor, the City Manager and other city officials. They all agreed that the Spring Games bring so much impact to the City Of Clermont that it deserves their backing.

I would recommend every college softball program contact Alison Strange today, and put the Spring Games on your list of events for next spring.

For more information on this great event go to http://www.pfxathletics.com, and maybe I will see you there next year.

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Chamberlain Continues Assault On HR Record While Sooners Run Win Streak To Eight

Chamberlain Continues Assault On HR Record

“Chamberlain Continues Assault On HR Record While Sooners Run Win Streak To Eight” Written By Bill Plummer

NORMAN, Okla –The numbers are 83 and seven. One is important individually while the other is important collectively.

Together they meant alot to the surging University of Oklahoma women’s softball team.

Seven represents the number of shutouts the Sooners have in a row while 83 is the number of career home runs OU slugger Lauren Chamberlain has after hitting a pair over the weekend in a 14-0 five-inning win over Samford Sunday afternoon at the Courtyard by Marriott Tournament.

Chamberlain is now tied for fifth on the all-time list after going 2-for-2 with three runs scored, three RBI and two walks. She hit a two-run homer in the third and a solo homer in the fourth inning.It was the Chamberlain’s 16th career multi-homer game and her second this season.

The Sooners (18-3) have now won eight games in a row with seven of the shutout variety after beating Missouri State (9-10) 11-0 in five innings to conclude a perfect weekend.
In going 4-0 at the tournament, OU outscored its opponents 44-0, outhit them .457 to .139 and had more home runs (13) than the other teams had hits (10).

With its seventh straight shutout, OU has tied a school record, which had been done three times previously. Most recently, OU accomplished the feat from March 9-17 in 2013. In their current streak, OU has outscored its opponents 67-0. The team’s 39-inning scoreless run dates back to the final inning against Kentucky on Feb. 21.

Sunday’s star was pitcher Kelsey Stevens, whose only hit allowed was a two-out single in the first inning. She walked one while striking out eight to improve her record to 7-0. She has gone 18 straight innings without giving up a run. She had a dominant weekend, striking out 20 while walking just two in running her record to 7-0. Opponents hit .179 off her in 11.o innings of work.
Erin Miller capped a remarkable weekend with her fourth homer of the season. She went 8-10 (.800) with six runs scored, 12 runs batted in, three home runs, two triples, one double, three walks and two stolen bases. She slugged 2.200 and got on base at a .857 clip.

Miller’s output was nearly matched by Chamberlain, who went 7-10 (.700) with six runs scored, 11 RBI, four home runs, one double and three walks.
The Sooners return to action this weekend with East Carolina and Iowa visit for the OU Tournament. First pitch is scheduled for 2:15 p.m. Saturday against Iowa.

5 Crucial Decisions For Softball Success

5 Crucial Decisions For Softball Success

“5 Crucial Decisions For Softball Success” Written By John Michael Kelly

As the spring softball season approaches, whether high school, travel or recreational I’d like you to pause for a moment and consider all the decisions your athlete has to make during the course of a game, and how little time she really has to make those decisions and react to ball, pitch or play. A typical batter has less than 1/2 second to determine pitch velocity, movement of the ball and ultimate spot to place the barrel of the bat each swing. No small feat! The same crazy quick time pressured decisions are true for fielding and base running.



Ultimately your athlete’s or team’s level of on the field success is dictated by the decisions she/they make. And these decisions are a product of many factors, most all of which are found within her head.

Behind every action is an emotion; behind every emotion is a thought. So how can you insure that your athlete or team thinks and feels optimally so that she/they make good decisions on the field?

1. Decide to play in the MOMENT. – Dwelling on past mistakes or worrying about future ones makes focusing on the task at hand impossible. “Be Here Now,” and watch decision making improve immediately.

2. Decide to NOT make any one mistake/at bat or play more important than it needs to be. – The athlete decides in her head how much power she gives any one “event” on the field. The more power she gives it the bigger it gets in her head; the less power she gives it the sooner the mistake fades away.

3. Decide to always practice with a clearly defined PURPOSE in mind. – Building confidence and making good decisions is the result of proper preparation, for competence breeds confidence.

4. Decide to focus on the PROCESS of getting better instead of your batting average, ERA, fielding % or wins and losses. – Learning to focus on EFFORT and refraining from self-judgment is always the best recipe for a quick bounce back after a mistake on the field.

5. Decide to take RESPONSIBILITY for your thinking and emotional state on the field. – Success happens by design, not by accident so come into a game with a plan, ready to face those adversity demons head on!

In truth so many poor decisions on the field are due to doubt and hesitation, a fear of making a mistake. If your athlete or team can implement these five decisions and you as parent or coach support them you will soon see infinitely better game decision making, better performance levels and a greater joy for playing the game!



Thanks for reading!

Softball Facemasks

Kelly Inouye-Perez Interviewed By Gary Leland

Kelly Inouye-Perez Interviewed

UCLA Coach Kelly Inouye-Perez Interview Produced By Gary Leland

Gary Leland: Kelly, thank you for taking the time out to talk with us. Now, first of all, before we do anything, I want to say congratulations on your year this year. I think in that final series, I saw the best softball game I’ve ever seen in my life.

Kelly Inouye-Perez: Oh. It was a magical moment but I think ultimately, my team was in a great place. We had prepared to be able to get to that moment. We were facing a great opponent and the energy, the excitement, the atmosphere, everything made for a wonderful finish. I’m very proud of our girls, very, very proud.

Gary Leland: Now, let me ask you a question about your team in general. Is there anything you did specifically that you can say that helped you get to that moment?

Kelly Inouye-Perez: You know, I really got to the point where I just trusted the players. I trusted my coaches and I trusted my players. That our culture was strong ultimately that every person in this program mattered in the Bruin family. We’re also really focused on being able to compete. Our competitive excellence was a little bit of John Wooden. There were some things that happened during that tournament. He went in the hospital and he was with us. There was a little Bruin magic on that day but our culture was strong. We competed and ultimately with that focus, we were able to get out there and just played great softball. I had a really good time doing it.

Gary Leland: You’re the third Head Coach of the Bruins I’ve interviewed and I can say one thing about you Bruins, you stick together. You are a family. It’s not just you guys play some ball. You guys work as a family. Is there anything special that started that or keeps it going or is it just part of the deal?

Kelly Inouye-Perez: Well, we have couple of things. Our Philosophy is Bruin family first. Family comes first, then school, and then softball. It’s a lifestyle that we practice. Every coach in the Bruin history has played in the uniform, has won a championship and has graduated from the university.

So for us, the history and tradition we take a great deal of pride because we helped create it and be on that like I said, the most important thing is it’s a lifestyle. It’s not a job for us so we love each other beyond just our wins and losses. It helps create a very strong culture within our program.

Gary Leland: A lot of our viewers are players or parents of players that want to go to school. They want to play ball and let’s say they want to play for you. What’s the best way for them to be seen by you? What would you say, “This is probably your best opportunity of me seeing you.”

Kelly Inouye-Perez: I think there’s a lot of opportunity. I travel all over the world. I think every university likes to keep a lot of their local talent home but for us, we’ve recruited players from different countries from Canada to Australia and from coast to coast. So we get out there and we recruit.

For the players, they’ve got to get to some of those showcases to be able to have an opportunity but I think the best opportunity for them to be seen is to create a video tape and then send it across, put their best clips together of what makes them special and send it to the top 20 schools in the country that they are interested in. They can directly get the information to the school and then hopefully get feedback on where they stand in the recruiting process.

Gary Leland: Okay, talking about these tapes since you brought it up and you’ve seen a lot of my bet.

Kelly Inouye-Perez: Yeah.

Gary Leland: I’ve bet you’ve seen as many as anybody. Is there something you see in a tape that you’d say, “I wish they put this in there, that all tapes should have.”

Kelly Inouye-Perez: I think it’s their opportunity to show what makes them great so there are personal information for us. First thing I look at is their GPA so for them to be able to get accepted in the UCLA is the number one thing. So for us, GPA, that’s should be the first thing. What year they graduate, their GPA, some of the accolades that they’ve accomplished but then the rest of it, the softball part is their opportunity to go out and show off what they do best. So show him your great hitting, show him your fielding, show him your throwing, show him your versatility. It have to be shorter.

We don’t want to see a 15-20 minute tape on an individual so anything within that 5-8 minute range showing their best qualities, I think it’s a great opportunity to get exposed because we don’t have control over. I can honestly say, I can’t be in every tournament across the country from year round. It’s not just going to happen. That’s part of recruiting. It’s a little bit of timing, a little bit of luck. Create your own luck.

Gary Leland: So you get a tape, you see it and this kid lives in South Dakota. I’m just using a state and this kid can’t come see you. So is there anything that works? Do you have a chance to see the kid?

Kelly Inouye-Perez: Absolutely! Like I was saying, I travel from coast to coast. So there are tournaments in Florida. There are tournaments in New Jersey. There are tournaments up in the northwest and there are also tournaments right there in Southern California. We go to Oklahoma. I mean yes, we travel all over.

Gary Leland: So the main thing is get in front of you is what you are saying.

Kelly Inouye-Perez: Well, the showcases, the tournaments and the tournaments that are bigger when there’s a lot more opportunity for us to be able to pick a tournament when there’s a lot more and that’s part of recruiting. You want to get on a team that can get to the point where they can get to the end of a tournament that just allows you to get more exposure, more games and ultimately to get to the bigger tournaments and those are identified from coast to coast.

There are tournaments every weekend they can play. A big part of that is you can get on the websites and find out what colleges are attending or you can pick up the phone or email the coaches to find out where they are going to be but ultimately, get out there. I think that’s a travel ball is about. There’s a great opportunity for you to get exposure year round.

Gary Leland: Let’s get to your team now. When you have the team every year, you get new players in, you develop them and make them fit into your system, get them in there. Is there anything that on a normal basis that you found something that players need more work on coming into college? You go, “Yeah, we keep running into this over and over.” Is there anything like that?

Kelly Inouye-Perez: Well, I think colleges is the opportunity to really take every part of their game to the next level but the biggest part of college is being able to manage your time, being able to figure out how to work out, do school, socially have fun, all of these things combined. It’s time management to be able to be graded everything and the big part of that is being able to keep their priority straight.

For us, we help define it for them in our Philosophy. Our family, how we support each other is the most important and then school is the next. That’s the next most important thing and them some falls the fun part. So I strongly suggest that time management, keeping your priority straight and then ultimately that’s what college is about. You’re going to continue to learn more, get better, stronger and then ultimately, the goals that you set and what you actually accomplished is going to determine on your ability to continue to learn and your work ethic, all those things combined add for success both on and off the field.

Gary Leland: During your team practices, is there anything that’s a specific drill or something just like your favorite thing to have those players do? “This is what we like to do and we do it.”

Kelly Inouye-Perez: I just love the sport. I think the basic fundamentals of the sport being able to execute the basic fundamentals of fielding, the basic fundamentals of throwing and the basic fundamentals of hitting, those aren’t fun but it’s the basic fundamentals that allow you to be successful on the big stage.
So ultimately for me, it’s really being able to pay attention to the little details of the game and then when the stage gets bigger then you just play it. So there’s a lot of things and that my job is to make creative and try to figure out new things. There’s all types of things but it’s really getting back to the basic fundamentals of the game so then it becomes really fun later.

Gary Leland:. What do you think of NFCA?

Kelly Inouye-Perez: Oh, we’re fortunate. I think it’s run by people that are invested in looking out for what’s best for the sport. We’re fortunate that we have a forum to be able to express what we believe can help the sport and things that we believe may be hurting the sport and be able to come together as an association throughout all the visions of the sport with one thing in mind – how can we continue to make this better for the future. So I think it’s a wonderful thing.

I’ve been a member for over 20 years and very proud of it, very proud to be a part. I love that there’s a voice in the forum but ultimately, it’s a great opportunity for all of us to get together away from the competitive field and kind of share thoughts and get refreshed and ultimately like I said it’s a lifestyle to be able to coach.

I joined when I started coaching. I started coaching over 22 years ago. So we’ve been able to attend and just be a part and ultimately hope that we can have a voice to be able to make sure that this sport continues to head in the right direction.

Gary Leland: And I ask one last question, How are we going to do this year?

Kelly Inouye-Perez: Well, the one thing that we learned is the most important part of success is being able to focus on today. Coach Wooden told me, the key to success is yesterday is as old as dirt and we have no control over tomorrow so we’ve got to focus on creating a masterpiece today so ultimately, right now my team is in a great place.

Gary Leland: That is some good advice there.

Kelly Inouye-Perez: Absolutely.

Gary Leland: As far as I know the best advice I’ve gotten in all of the interviews I have done. Thank you for taking the time to talk with us.

Kelly Inouye-Perez: Thank you.

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