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Oklahoma Sooners Claim Every Big XII Softball Award

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Rich DeCray

The conference accolades poured in for the Oklahoma Sooners who claimed a Big XII Championship earlier this month. Continuously reloading each and every year, Patty Gasso was tabbed as the Coach of the Year for the ninth time since the birth of the Big XII. This particular occasion market the fifth consecutive season the coach has won the award. After losing the first two games, something clicked for this group as the Sooners ended with a 47-7 overall record and the No. 3 Seed in the NCAA Tournament.

Providing leadership and plenty of offense, Erin Miller earned Co-Player of the Year honors with Oklahoma State's Vanessa Shippy. Behind 124 stolen bases and a .401 batting average, Miller becomes the first outfielder to earn PotY in Big XII history. Over the past five years, Oklahoma has produced four Conference Player of the Year winners.

In the circle, phenom Paige Parker continues to set the tone. Against conference foes, Parker remained perfect at 13-0 along with an impressive 28-3 overall record. During the 31 game stretch, the sophomore posted 12 shutouts, a number which ranks second nationally. Considering this is Parker's second consecutive Pitcher of the Year award, it's tough to see another pitcher unseat the Sooner in the coming years.

Joining in, Shay Knighten claimed Big XII Freshman of the Year. Playing first base, Knighten recorded a .412 batting average in her first season against conference opponents. The number was good enough to lead the team.

Lastly, shortstop Kelsey Arnold earned Defensive Player of the Year honors. After doing away with the award following the 2012 season, the Big XII reinstated the individual honor. On a total of 56 fielding chances in conference play, Arnold refused to commit an error. She owns a .987 fielding percentage, topping the league.