NCAA Softball Regionals: Seven Pac-12 teams advance to Sunday
The Utes continued their winning ways on Saturday morning, upsetting No. 9 Kentucky 3-0. Katie Donovan was dominating on the mound for the Utes, tossing 6.2 shut out innings and allowing just four hits and no walks while striking out four. Anissa Urtez provided the big offensive blow for Utah, sending a two-run home run over the fence in the top of the 1st. The Utes will play Sunday morning at 10 am PT/11 am MT in the Regional Final.
— NCAA Softball (@NCAAsoftball) May 21, 2016
The Golden Bears ran into a tough opponent on Saturday morning, falling to No. 6 Alabama 3-1. Nina Ontiveros delivered another solid performance, giving up just three runs in her six innings pitched, but the Cal offense was stifled by Crimson Tide pitchers Sydney Littlejohn and Alexis Osorio, who combined to strike out nine.
Cal rallied, however, in their second game of the day to keep their season alive. The Bears topped Texas State 4-3 to earn a rematch with Alabama on Sunday. Singles from Kobie Pettis and Khala Taylor put Cal up 2-0 in the first. The Bobcats would tie the game in the third, but a two-run single from Lindsey Rood in the fifth would be enough to put away Texas State.
Rood comes through! She lines a single, two runs score and Fight For California hits the PA system! Bears lead 4-2 in the 5th. #GoBears
— Cal Softball (@CalSoftball) May 22, 2016
Danielle O'Toole showed why she's one of the best in the game on Saturday, leading her Wildcats to two wins and into the Regional Final on Sunday.
Resuming their rain-delayed game against Ohio State early on Saturday morning, O'Toole took the mound and shut down Ohio State. Katiyana Mauga provided the only offense the 'Cats would need in game one, blasting a two-run shot over the fence in the fourth inning. O'Toole cruised the rest of the game, maybe gaining momentum for game 2, where she led Arizona past a tough Tennessee team 4-0.
RBI singles from Nancy Bowling and Lauren Young put Arizona on the board in the bottom of the sixth against the Vols, and once again it was more than enough for O'Toole. The Wildcats will play their final game of the Regionals on Sunday.
Ladies and gentlemen, Danielle O'Toole's Saturday:
11 innings pitched.
2 hits. pic.twitter.com/32IHcGJp37
— Arizona Softball (@UA_Softball) May 21, 2016
UCLA also punched their ticket to the Regional Finals with a 3-2 win over Cal State Fullerton. The Bruins and Titans traded run for run through the first six innings. Solo home runs from Kylee Perez and Delaney Spaulding provided the early UCLA offense, and the two teams found themselves tied at two in the bottom of the sixth. But Spaulding wasn't done, and her second solo shot of the day in the bottom of the sixth proved to be the game-winner.
HOME RUN!!!! OPPO TACO!!!! Spaulding with the third two-homer game of her career, going to right-center. 3-2 Bruins, T6.
— UCLA Softball (@UCLASoftball) May 21, 2016
The Sun Devils recovered nicely from their loss on Friday night with a 1-0 win over LIU Brooklyn in a tight game on Saturday. The teams traded zeros through the first six innings before Taylor Becerra delivered her first career walk-off single to keep the Sun Devils alive. Kelsey Kessler was brilliant on the mound for ASU, facing the minimum 21 batters and allowing just one hit.
Arizona State kept it's winning streak (and season) alive with an extra-innings thriller on Saturday night. The Sun Devils, fueled by Jen Soria, topped McNeese State 3-2 in 14 innings in the elimination game. Soria not only tied the game in the bottom of the eighth with a solo home run, but she took a bases-loaded walk in the bottom of the 14th to win it for ASU. She definitely had some fans in the stands.
— Sun Devil Softball (@ASUSoftball) May 22, 2016
Cheridan Hawkins took a no-hitter into the top of the seventh, and the Ducks took their second game 6-0 over Baylor in Eugene. Oregon scored in every inning after the bottom of the first in the win, and the only hit allowed by Hawkins was a one-out single in the top of the seventh. She also struck out four while not allowing a walk. The 2-0 Ducks will play in their Regional Final on Sunday at 4 pm PT/5 pm MT.
— GoDucks (@GoDucks) May 21, 2016
Washington kept the good times rolling for Pac-12 teams on Saturday, coming from behind to top Minnesota 5-2 to also move to 2-0 in regional play. The Huskies had fallen behind 2-1 in the bottom of the fifth, but Taylor Van Zee came up with yet another clutch hit the very next inning - a bases-clearing double to put UW up 4-2. They'll play on Sunday in their Regional Final as well.
Oregon State fought long and hard in their regional, but fell to Jacksonville State 5-4 in 14 innings on Saturday afternoon in the elimination game. It was a back-and-forth battle, with the Gamecocks taking a 2-0 lead in the fifth before the Beavers tied it at two on an RBI single by Alysha Everett in the seventh.
The roles were reversed in extras, though, when OSU took a 4-2 lead in the top of the 13th before surrendering two runs in the bottom of the inning. Jacksonville State eventually scored in the bottom of the 14h on a Beaver error, and ended the longest game (by innings) in Oregon State softball history.
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