The Oklahoma University women’s softball team captured its third NCAA Women’s College World Series title in five years; defeating Florida for its second consecutive championship.
FCA congratulates the Sooners and head coach Patty Gasso, a longtime friend and active participant in the international sports ministry.
“Everyone at FCA couldn’t be more excited and proud of the Oklahoma Sooners on this incredible achievement,” said Donna Noonan, FCA’s National Director of Events and Women’s Staff Development. “We congratulate Coach Gasso and the amazing young women who put forth their absolute best during the World Series. It’s awesome to watch these athletes as they inspire young girls who are passionate about sports as well.” The Faith of the Oklahoma University Women's Softball Team
In the powerful FCA video above from 2013, Gasso added that it can be easy to become caught up in the must-win attitude of Division I sports. But her focus remains on her players’ relationship with God long after they leave Oklahoma.
“It is important that I offer them everything I can to make them their physical best, their mental best, their emotional best, their academic best, and most importantly, their spiritual best,” she said. “And FCA really helps bring the spiritual side in, where we can really reach out and give them that opportunity to find the Lord.”
FCA Magazine has also highlighted Gasso’s coaching journey leading up to her fourth World Series title.
The eight-time Big 12 Coach of the Year with 10 previous trips to the World Series under her belt—has led her Sooner squads to postseason play in each of her 22 seasons at Oklahoma. Despite the success, she says her greatest satisfaction comes from seeing her players develop and mature off the field.
“The emphasis on winning is not as prioritized as people might think,” Gasso said. “I’m most proud of watching the transition and what happens between the time when athletes come into our program as freshmen and leave as seniors. I believe that my job is to play a large part in forming these athletes for their futures. They come in as girls, and my goal is to make sure they leave as women, hopefully strong women with a heart for God.”
Gasso’s passion for developing softball players is only surpassed by her love for sharing Christ, and FCA allows her to use the gifts God has given her to bring Him glory.
“I love my players, and I want them to know the truth,” Gasso said. “Young athletes don’t understand that it’s OK to make mistakes and it’s OK to doubt. God wants to be our best friend and talk with us every day. He is a loving and forgiving God, and I think FCA does a wonderful job reaching out to all athletes to share this message.”
To read the complete FCA Magazine article featuring Gasso, click here.
Photo: © Rob Ferguson-USA TODAY Sports