#9 Oklahoma State Softball 2020 Preview

Oklahoma State Cowgirls
Overall Rank: #9
Conference Rank: #2 Big 12
Oklahoma State Logo
Oklahoma State was outstanding in 2019. They won 45 games and eliminated the defending national champion Florida State on the road in Tallahassee. The Cowgirls advanced to the women’s College World Series for the first time since the 2011 season. Oklahoma State knocked off Florida 3-2 in their first game, but dropped their next two to Oklahoma and Washington in a 1-0 nail biter. The 2019 season raised the bar back to where it belongs for the Cowgirls and that is to consistently advance to the Women’s College World Series on a regular basis.  
2019: 45-17, 13-5
2019 Postseason: NCAA
Coach: Kenny Gajewski
Key Departed Players:
Madi Sue Montgomery, INF, .337 BA, 6 HR, 47 RBI
Samantha Show, P, .333 BA, 20 HR, 56 RBI, 2.34 ERA, 22-10 W/L, 200.1 IP, 61 BB, 118 SO
Rylee Bayless, OF, .307 BA, 8 HR, 34 RBI, 15 SB
Taylor lynch, UTIL, .250 BA, 0 HR, 19 RBI
Samantha Clakley, P, 2.77 ERA, 10-4 W/L, 88.1 IP, 40 BB, 48 SO
Key Returning Players:
Cheyenne Factor, OF, .338 BA, 9 HR, 39 RBI
Michaela Richbourg, INF, .274 BA, 14 HR, 41 RBI
Chelsea Alexander, OF, .268 BA, 1 HR, 7 RBI, 9 SB
Kiley Naomi, INF, .258 BA, 6 HR, 18 RBI, 19 SB
Sydney Pennington, INF, .235 BA, 10 HR, 33 RBI
Logan Simunek, P, 3.42 ERA, 8-3 W/L, 84.0 IP, 38 BB, 51 SO
Gabby Sprang, P, 3.57 ERA, 5-0 W/L, 31.1 IP, 24 BB, 15 SO
Things will look a little bit different for Oklahoma State as they have to replace the durability, power, and entertaining bat flips of Samantha Show. Logan Simunek and Gabby Sprang are the only two returning pitchers from last year’s team as they combined to go 13-3 and threw 115.1 innings between them. Carrie Eberle joins the Oklahoma State pitching staff this spring , and she will need to carryover her performance from 2019 at Virginia Tech where she led the Hokies back to the NCAA Tournament. The offense should be strong despite losing Show, Madi Sue Montgomery, and Rylee Bayless. Cheyenne Factor will be back and looking to build off a strong freshman season in 2019 where she hit .339 with nine homeruns and 39 runs batted in. Most players take a big step forward between their freshman and sophomore seasons so look for Factor to get even better in 2020. Michaela Richbourg has very good power as she hit 14 homeruns and drove in 41 while hitting .274 last season. A good natural progression for Richbourg would be to boost the batting average to around .290-.300 and bump the homerun total closer to 20. The first three weeks of the non-conference schedule are loaded with games against LSU, Virginia Tech, South Florida, Minnesota, Alabama, Louisiana, and Ole Miss. The race for the Big 12 title should come down to the last two weekends against Texas and Oklahoma. If Oklahoma State gets quality pitching all year long like they did in 2019, then they will be on the bubble for a top eight national seed for the NCAA Tournament.  
Projected Postseason: NCAA Softball Tournament