The Oklahoma Sooners came into the Women’s College World Series on an absolute tear, but Washington pitcher Gabbie Plain brought the team back down to earth with a fantastic performance. Oklahoma fell, 2-0, and will now have to play its way out of the loser’s bracket.
The first four innings were a pitcher’s dual between Paige Parker and Washington’s Plain, who combined to allow only five hits through the first four innings. However, Parker was pulled in favor of Paige Lowary in the top of the 5th following a walk, and the Sooners proceeded to allow a pair of runs on two hits and an error. The less-than-stellar defensive play in the inning was uncharacteristic for OU, and it ended up costing them in the end.
Washington threatened once again in the top of the sixth by loading the bases, but Parker was called back in to keep OU in the game. She did just that, and she capped it off with a heady play to quickly flip the ball to Leah Wodach and get the force at home.
A big two-out rally nearly resulted in some runs in the bottom of the sith, but it wasn’t meant to be. After singles from Sydney Romero and Jocelyn Alo, Shay Knighten flared one to right and forced Trysten Melhart to make a diving catch. Whether she actually made that catch or not has been the subject of debate since it occurred.
To me, it looked like she had control long enough to constitute a catch, but not everyone agrees with that. Regardless, it was a dagger to the Sooners’ heart as they desperately tried to get something going. OU then had another two-out rally going in the bottom of the 7th, but Lundberg struck out swinging to end it with two on base.
Oklahoma will play Arizona State at 11 a.m. CT on Saturday and will try to keep the dream of a three-peat alive.