After some surprising results in the opening weekend of the 2022 softball season, we look forward to what the second weekend of the year has in store.
Perhaps the biggest tournament of the week is the St. Pete Clearwater Elite Invitational (SPC). Oklahoma State, Texas, and Texas Tech will take part in the tournament, along with several other teams that appeared in the USA Softball Top 25 after one week of play.
Baylor, who has started their season off at 5-0, will host an Oregon team that has an identical record but is ranked 13th in the country. This three-game series will be a major test for the Bears and could be a springboard for them if they can’t pull out a series win against one of the Pac-12’s best teams.
The rest of the Big 12 will take action this weekend as well, heading to various invitational tournaments around the country. Here’s a peek at what each team has on deck this weekend.
Oklahoma (No. 1); 5-0
The Sooners got off to just the start that they wanted last weekend and will look to keep the momentum going when they head down to Texas for the Houston Classic. The Sooners will not face a ranked team this weekend, but they will face a Houston team twice that was able to split two games with Texas Tech last weekend. They also have two games against McNeese State, and then a game against Texas State to cap off their weekend on Sunday.
|McNeese State||Feb 18 (Fri)||12:00 p.m. CT||Houston, TX||TV: SoonerSports.tv|
|Houston||Feb 18 (Fri)||3:00 p.m. CT||Houston, TX||TV: ESPN+|
|McNeese State||Feb 19 (Sat)||12:30 p.m. CT||Houston, TX||TV: SoonerSports.tv|
|Houston||Feb 19 (Sat)||3:00 p.m. CT||Houston, TX||TV: ESPN+|
|Texas State||Feb 20 (Sun)||10:00 a.m. CT||Houston, TX||TV: SoonerSports.tv|
Oklahoma State (No. 7); 4-1
The Cowgirls got off to a little shakier start than they wanted last weekend, dropping a contest to a tough Duke team, but rallied to go undefeated the rest of the way. This weekend, there is a major step up in competition though, as OSU will face four teams that are currently ranked in the Top 25. The toughest test will surely be against the fifth-ranked Washington Huskies on Saturday night, but there isn’t a slouch on the schedule all weekend. The one team that OSU will face that isn’t ranked, South Florida, received votes in this week’s poll after a 4-1 victory over 16th-ranked Michigan last weekend.
|Michigan (16)||Feb 18 (Fri)||9:00 a.m. CT||Clearwater, FL||TV: ESPNU|
|LSU (22)||Feb 18 (Fri)||3:00 p.m. CT||Clearwater, FL||TV: ESPNU|
|USF (RV)||Feb 19 (Sat)||12:30 p.m. CT||Clearwater, FL||TV: ESPN+|
|Washington (5)||Feb 19 (Sat)||5:00 p.m. CT||Clearwater, FL||TV: ESPN+|
|Northwestern (23)||Feb 20 (Sun)||8:30 a.m. CT||Clearwater, FL||TV: ESPN+|
Texas (No. 9); 5-1
Texas was stunned by a barrage of home runs in their second game of the season, losing 6-4 to Florida Gulf Coast. In the four games following the upset, the Longhorns have outscored opponents 31-6 and gone a perfect 4-0. They will need that kind of production this weekend because they will face one of the toughest stretches of their season in the SPC Elite Invitational. They will open up play with the sixth-ranked Florida State Seminoles and will likely face one of the top pitchers in the country in Kathryn Sandercock. After facing the Noles, and then an undefeated Auburn team Friday night, Texas will take on the third-ranked UCLA Bruins on Saturday afternoon. In all, Texas will face four ranked teams, and another that is receiving votes after week 1 (Notre Dame).
|Florida State (6)||Feb 18 (Fri)||12:00 p.m. CT||Clearwater, FL||TV: ESPNU|
|Auburn (25)||Feb 18 (Fri)||3:00 p.m. CT||Clearwater, FL||TV: LHN|
|UCLA (3)||Feb 19 (Sat)||3:00 p.m. CT||Clearwater, FL||TV: ESPNU|
|UCF (24)||Feb 19 (Sat)||6:00 p.m. CT||Clearwater, FL||TV: LHN|
|Notre Dame (RV)||Feb 20 (Sun)||10:00 a.m. CT||Clearwater, FL||TV: ESPN+|
Iowa State (RV); 4-1
Iowa State opened up their season going 4-1 in the Doc Halverson UNI Dome Tournament and even earned a vote in the Top 25 poll after an impressive showing. The Lady Cyclones will have a chance to build their resume this weekend with a manageable slate in the Troy Cox Invitational. Their toughest matchup on paper will be against Nebraska on Sunday morning, a team they defeated last weekend 7-3.
|New Mexico State||Feb 18 (Fri)||5:30 p.m. CT||Las Cruces, NM||WAC Digital Network|
|UT Arlington||Feb 18 (Fri)||8:00 p.m. CT||Las Cruces, NM|
|SE Louisiana||Feb 19 (Sat)||5:30 p.m. CT||Las Cruces, NM|
|Nothern Colorado||Feb 19 (Sat)||8:00 p.m. CT||Las Cruces, NM|
|Nebraska||Feb 20 (Sun)||10:00 a.m. CT||Las Cruces, NM|
Baylor (NR); 5-0
Baylor is the only team in the Big 12 staying home this weekend instead of going to a tournament, but that doesn’t mean their weekend will be any easier. In fact, it’s probably one of the most daunting schedules that a Big 12 team will face in the coming days. A three-game series with No. 13 Oregon will be a true measuring stick for the Lady Bears and should be a series worth following, even if you don’t follow Baylor. If the Bears can win the series it would be a huge feather in the Big 12’s cap, as Oregon is expected to battle UCLA and Washington for Pac-12 supremacy in 2022.
|Oregon (13)||Feb 18 (Fri)||2:30 p.m. CT||Waco, TX||TV: ESPN+|
|Oregon (13)||Feb 18 (Fri)||5:00 p.m. CT||Waco, TX||TV: ESPN+|
|Oregon (13)||Feb 19 (Sat)||12:00 p.m. CT||Waco, TX||TV: ESPN+|
Texas Tech (NR); 3-1
Texas Tech will likely face the hardest task of any Big 12 team this weekend as they will face six teams ranked in the Top-25; talk about a “prove it” opportunity for the Red Raiders. Tech starts off the weekend with No. 25 Auburn and 12th-ranked Clemson on Thursday, 23rd-ranked Northwestern and No. 24 UCF on Friday, and then they will face one of the top teams in the country on Saturday when they take on No. 5 Washington. On Sunday they close out their time at the SPC Elite Invitational with a date with No. 22 LSU.
|Auburn (25)||Feb 17 (Thu)||11:30 a.m. CT||Clearwater, FL||TV: SEC Network|
|Clemson (12)||Feb 17 (Thu)||2:30 p.m. CT||Clearwater, FL||TV: ACC Network|
|Northwestern (23)||Feb 18 (Fri)||9:30 a.m. CT||Clearwater, FL||TV: ESPN+|
|UCF (24)||Feb 18 (Fri)||5:00 p.m. CT||Clearwater, FL||TV: ESPN+|
|Washington (5)||Feb 19 (Sat)||1:30 p.m. CT||Clearwater, FL||TV: ESPN+|
|LSU (22)||Feb 20 (Sun)||8:00 a.m. CT||Clearwater, FL||TV: SEC Network|
Kansas (NR); 4-1
The Jayhawks started off their season well with a four-win showing in last week’s Grand Canyon Tournament. This weekend the competition heats up as KU heads to College Station, Texas for the Texas A&M Tournament. Obviously, the Lady Aggies are the biggest threat to Kansas in this tournament, but a date with Pittsburgh and Missouri State should be good tests as well. The Jayhawks will start things off against Stephen F. Austin on Friday morning.
|Stephen F. Austin||Feb 18 (Fri)||11:30 a.m. CT||College Station, TX|
|Texas A&M (RV)||Feb 18 (Fri)||2:00 p.m. CT||College Station, TX||TV: SEC Network +|
|Missouri State||Feb 19 (Sat)||9:00 a.m. CT||College Station, TX|
|Pittsburgh||Feb 19 (Sat)||7:00 p.m. CT||College Station, TX|
|Texas A&M (RV)||Feb 20 (Sun)||11:30 a.m. CT||College Station, TX||TV: SEC Network +|