NORMAN — Jayda Coleman didn't get complacent.
The leadoff hitter for the OU softball team usually steps up to the plate with one goal in mind: to get on base. That's all it takes when Jocelyn Alo, the record holder for the most career home runs in NCAA Division I softball history, bats second in the lineup.
"I just think for me, my role is to get on base because I have (Alo) right behind me when I am leadoff," Coleman said following Friday's win over Prairie View A&M. "I just do whatever I can to get on base."
But Coleman took matters into her own hands during the first inning of OU's 3-2 win over Texas A&M on Saturday in the NCAA Norman Regional.
Like a cobra waiting to strike, the sophomore got into her crouched stance at the plate and waited for a favorable pitch from Grace Uribe. The fifth toss proved to be the one, as Coleman crushed the ball and sent it out of Marita Hynes Field for a solo home run.
Coleman played the role of the aggressor all afternoon. She finished with a pair of RBIs and a run on 2-for-3 hitting.
"I'm very comfortable," Coleman said. "I've been playing this game since I was four years old... It's really nice to have people around you who always have your back to ease your mind a little bit... I'm enjoying it out there."
Coleman's efforts proved to be crucial for the Sooners, whose bats never fully woke up on a sleepy Saturday. OU also survived the upset bid thanks to a strong showing from Hope Trautwein inside the circle.
After joining forces with Nicole May to record a combined no-hitter against Prairie View A&M (five innings), Trautwein allowed no hits and tallied two strikeouts in the first three innings against Texas A&M.
It wasn't until the fourth inning that the Aggies finally got a hit courtesy of Haley Lee, but nothing came of it and the Sooners maintained their 2-0 lead.
Coleman then struck again in the bottom of the fourth by sending a line drive into right field. She got called out while sliding into third base, but not before Rylie Boone reached home to make it a 3-0 contest.
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Lee continued to be a thorn in the Sooners' side in the sixth inning. The senior Aggie connected on a pitch from Trautwein and sent it over the wall in left field for a two-run homer that trimmed the deficit to 3-2.
"You've got to give credit where credit is due," Trautwein said. "(Lee) is really good, and we knew that going into this game. When you get beat, you just have to come back on the next pitch."
That's exactly what she did.
Trautwein forced Texas A&M into a 1-2-3 inning in the seventh to finish her complete game. She ended the day with a pair of strikeouts and two runs allowed.
"If I go off what we do at practice, (Trautwein) gives up a home run and comes back that much stronger," OU head coach Patty Gasso said. "I had no concerns because I know what she's like at practice, and she responded immediately."
OU (51-2 will face Texas A&M — which rallied past Minnesota 10-7 in an eliminatio — at 1 p.m. Sunday, needing just one win to reach the NCAA Super Regional. As the only undefeated team left in the Norman Regional, the Sooners must get beaten twice on Sunday to be eliminated.
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This article originally appeared on Oklahoman: OU softball beats Texas A&M, advances to NCAA Norman Regional final