#36 Tulsa Softball 2021 Preview

Tulsa Golden Hurricanes
Overall Rank: #36
Conference Rank: #2 American
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Tulsa will be looking to build upon a 37-win season that resulted in another trip to the NCAA Tournament. The Golden Hurricanes were sent to the Stillwater Regional where they went 2-2 as they beat a SEC school in Arkansas along with BYU but lost twice to Oklahoma State. In 2020, Crissy Strimple took over for long time head coach John Bargfeldt who had led Tulsa to 11 trips to Regionals, including eight in the last nine seasons.
2019: 37-20, 16-5
2019 Postseason: NCAA
Coach: Crissy Strimple
Key Departed Players:
Julia Hollingsworth, OF, .418 BA. 3 HR, 27 RBI, 9 SB
Morgan Neal, INF, .302 BA, 1 HR, 31 RBI, 10 SB
Rylie Spell, C, .265 BA, 5 HR, 29 RBI
Tori Stafford, INF, .252 BA, 3 HR, 17 RBI
Mikayla Whitten, INF/OF, .243 BA, 2 HR, 16 RBI, 7 SB
Key Returning Players:
Chenise Delce, P, 1.63 ERA, 15-6 W-L, 141.2 IP, 43 BB, 124 SO, .282 BA, 2 HR, 22 RBI
Samantha Pochop, P, 2.91 ERA, 12-8 W-L, 118.0 IP, 45 BB, 115 SO
Kassidy Scott, P, 2.96 ERA, 9-6 W-L, 116.0 IP, 29 BB, 52 SO
There will be some reloading to do for Coach Strimple in the everyday lineup heading into the 2020 season. The lost production of Julia Hollingsworth, Morgan Neal, Rylie Spell, and Tori Stafford won’t be easy to address at the start of the season. Kylie Norwood is a transfer from Toledo that will need to make an impact right away. Norwood had a productive career at Toledo where she hit .307, scored 77 runs, hit five homeruns, and drove in 51 over the course of two seasons for the Rockets. Grace Jarvis and Kyndal Pirtle are also newcomers that will be looking to lock down starting jobs and provide some instant offense for the Golden Hurricanes. Pitching should be the strength for Tulsa in 2020 as they have three quality arms coming back. Chenise Delce is coming off a 15-win season with a 1.63 earned run average and does an excellent job of going after hitters. Delce struck out 124 batters while walking just 43 in 141.2 innings pitched in 2019. Samantha Poncho was 12-8 with a 2.91 earned run average and also does a nice job of limiting walks as she walked 45 batters in 118.0 innings. Kassidy Scott will pitch to contact and trust her defense as she struck out 52 batters in 116.0 innings. Coach Strimple’s ability to throw three quality pitchers will be a huge plus heading into her first full season as the head coach. Tulsa should, by the end of the season, be peaking and contend for the American Athletic Conference championship and an NCAA Tournament berth,
Projected Postseason: NCAA Softball Tournament