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Two-Sport Owasso Standout Bound for OU

By MIKE MOGUIN
GTR Sports Writer

BATTER UP: Owasso centerfielder Rylie Boone goes up to bat in a game for the Lady Rams this past fastpitch softball season. Boone is signed a letter of intent to play at the University of Oklahoma.


Photo by Christian Campbell


After making her decision years ago, Owasso’s Rylie Boone is bound for the University of Oklahoma.

The senior two-sport athlete signed a national letter of intent on Nov. 14 to play softball for OU, a perennial power with four national championships, three coming in the past six seasons.

Boone, a southpaw centerfielder, has played the diamond since the age of four. Her talent will add depth and enrich a program known for power hitting and solid pitching.

In the 2018 fastpitch season, she produced some phenomenal numbers. Boone batted an average of .527, 188 hits, scored 146 runs scored, 83 RBIs, 43 doubles and drew 40 walks, while helping the Lady Rams to the state tournament.

When the Sooners won their second overall title in 2013, Boone, who also plays basketball, was inspired.

“I talked to Coach (Patty) Gasso,” Boone said. “OU is really determined and they want you to reach your best potential as a player and in life. That got me.”

The following summer, before entering eight grade, she made a verbal commitment to the program.

Boone believes her love for the game, skills in the field and being a team leader is what Gasso saw in her as she was being recruited.

All those years being committed allowed her time to learn the character of the Sooner coach. Boone is also moved by the team chemistry.

“Coach Gasso always says she likes athletes who can play different sports. I still work on softball during basketball season. I’ll go hit at the cages with Coach (Shane) Eicher. It benefits me to stay in shape and to stay fast at the same time.

“I love how they (the Sooners) are together as a team,” Boone said. “And Gasso, I love Gasso. She’s really determined. She’s not there to be your friend, she’s there to be your coach and someone who can give you guidance. Some of the girls like Shay Knighten and Sydney Romero say that Gasso is a really big impact because she teaches you things about life. She’s hard on you because it makes you a better woman and also a better player.”

Another influence for Boone is her family.

Her brother, Trevor Boone was a baseball standout at Memorial while in high school. He is now preparing for his junior campaign at Oklahoma State.

“I watched him all my life growing up,” she said.

As for her positions, Boone loves playing centerfield because she gets to run.
“I’m fast, so I’m just really out there,” she said.

“I love the sport so much,” Boone added. “Softball is more of where my craziness comes out because the atmosphere is so loud. You can get hyped.”

When it comes to basketball, Boone plays guard.

“I love basketball too, because it’s a faster-pace,” she said. “Softball is also fast, but basketball is faster-paced and if you mess up, you just redeem yourself like that. It’s quicker to redeem yourself.”

Boone played a key role in helping the Lady Rams win Class the 6A state championship in basketball last season. With three starters lost to graduation, the team is moving on.

“I think our mindset has totally shifted,” she said. “It’s more like, ‘Don’t focus on last year,’ ‘Put it behind us,’ and, ‘It’s a new year now.’ It’s just a whole new mindset for the team.”

With her being one of two returning starters, Boone believes more responsibility weighs on her.

“I have a bigger role to play than I did last year,” she said. “The team has bigger responsibilities and more roles to get what we need to get done.

Despite losing most of its offensive firepower, Boone believes the team can overcome that through strengthening its chemistry and ultimately repeat.

“We’re going to win. We’re going to win the state tournament,” she said.

Going back to the subject of softball, Boone recalls how impressive the Sooners were when they captured their 2017 national championship, highlighted by a 17-inning marathon in game one of the College World Series against Florida.

“That was a super-long game,” she said. “I thought it was so cool because they never got down. That’s what I thought was so cool.”

When asked what she envisions for herself at OU, she made it clear:
“A National Championship,” Boone said.

Updated 12-19-2018

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