NCAA Softball Super Regionals: UCLA heads to WCWS, Arizona, Oregon eliminated
UCLA punched its ticket to the Women's College World Series in Oklahoma City, upending fellow Pac-12 powerhouse Oregon 2-1 in a Game 3 thriller. The Bruins rallied back big after falling 8-1 in Game 1 of the Super Regional, taking Game 2 in an extra-inning, walk-off 2-1 win to tie the series up. Selina Ta'amilo--who pitched a nine-inning, one-run gem in Game 2--took the circle for Game 3. But two early Duck hits sent her back to the dugout; Paige McDuffee took over. McDuffee held the powerful Ducks lineup to just four hits and one run over 6.2 innings. The Ducks' only run came in a final-breath rally in the seventh after Gwen Svekis singled and Jenna Lilley launched an RBI double deep to center.
The Ducks sent their ace, Cheridan Hawkins, to the circle for Game 3. But the Bruins scrapped enough runs of support against her for McDuffee. They struck early in the first after Allexis Bennett drew a leadoff walk and Mysha Sataraka singled her home. Sataraka rallied again in the fourth with an RBI double to score Delaney Spaulding, who drew the leadoff walk.
BRUINS WIN!!!! UCLA 2, Oregon 1!!!! OKC BOUND!!!! pic.twitter.com/wdIbOZehdE
— UCLA Softball (@UCLASoftball) May 30, 2016
The Ducks still have an amazing season to celebrate.
Mike White - "Four straight Pac-12 titles for this group. There aren't many senior groups who can claim that kind of achievement."
— Oregon Duck Softball (@OregonSB) May 30, 2016
The Wildcats fell to the Tigers 4-1 in game two, as Auburn forced a decisive game three. Arizona took an early lead on an RBI double from Alexis Dotson in the second inning, but it was all Auburn after that. Haley Fagan got the offense rolling with a two-run double, and Tiffany Howard's two-RBI single put the game out of reach.
Arizona's offense was also stifled in game three, as Auburn rolled to a 6-1 win and a trip to the College World Series. The Tigers jumped out to an early lead, scoring two in the bottom of the first on an RBI single from Kasey Cooper and a sacrifice fly from Carlee Wallace, and they never looked back. Auburn added two more runs in the third, along with one in the fifth and one in the sixth. A Nancy Bowling RBI single plated the only run for the Wildcats.
FINAL: Auburn 6, Arizona 1
It's been a fun ride, but it ends a win shy of OKC. Thanks for following along all year, fans!
— Arizona Softball (@UA_Softball) May 29, 2016