Oklahoma softball is gearing up for its first game after losing to Texas on Saturday and it will be without one of its most polarizing players, according to head coach Patty Gasso.
Gasso says that junior utility MacKenzie Donihoo is taking a leave of absence from the team, with no timetable for her return at this point.
“Right now, all I can say is Lou is taking care of Lou,” Gasso said. “That’s about it, it’s more of a personal matter, and I’m going to kind of leave it at that. Lou is doing what’s best for Lou right now.”
Donihoo, or “Lou,” as she is known by Sooner faithful, was a major part of Oklahoma’s run through the WCWS last season but has been unable to recapture that magic thus far in 2022.
Donihoo has turned in a .250 batting average so far this season, hitting one home run, drawing seven walks, and striking out 11 times. Compare that to last season’s numbers of .432 and nine home runs, while adding in her dip in fielding percentage from .981 in 2021 to .846 in 2022 and it’s clear that something is going on with the fiery outfielder.
Coinciding with Donihoo’s drop-off is excellent play from Alyssa Brito and Rylie Boone, both of whom have secured spots in the Sooners’ starting lineup in the outfield. Boone’s average of .444 ranks third on the team, while Brito has already hit ten homers this season with a .358 average.
It’s safe to say that the Sooners are still in good hands when they face North Texas on Wednesday night, but having Donihoo when the postseason rolls around would be a big positive for Oklahoma.