WCWS Championship Series Evened Up

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Karl Anderson
By Karl Anderson
Assistant Director of Communications
JUNE 07, 2016
3 Oklahoma
Oklahoma
7
11
Auburn
4 Auburn
Inning-by-Inning
Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 R H E
OU 1 6 0 0 0 0 0 0 7 10 2
AUB 0 5 0 2 0 0 0 4 11 13 2
Pitching
  IP H R ER BB SO
W - Martin (15-3) 2.0 1 0 0 0 0
L - Chestnut (9-1) 5.2 11 6 6 2 3
S - N/A - - - - - -
Individual Leaders
  AB R H RBI BB HR
OU - Self 4 1 2 1 0 1
AUB - Carosone 4 1 3 4 0 1
Game Notes

Oklahoma is one win away from its third national championship ... the Sooners are 3-1 all-time against Auburn and 8-1 vs. SEC teams this season ... OU is 21-15 all-time in the Women's College World Series ... the loss snapped OU's 31-game winning streak, which was the longest in school history and tied for the 17th longest in NCAA history ... OU has homered in 11 straight World Series games and 14 of its past 15 such contests .. the six-run second tied for the most runs in one inning in Championship Series history ... OU's 433 runs scored this year are fifth most in Big 12 history and fourth most at OU ... Shay Knighten has hit safely in nine straight games, extending her career best run ... Kelsey Stevens is tied for eight in OU history with 89 career starts

OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. – The 2016 Women’s College World Series will be decided Wednesday night after No. 4 Auburn (58-11) evened the best-of-three series with an 11-7, eight-inning win over No. 3 Oklahoma (56-8) in game two Tuesday night.

The Tigers rallied from a 7-0 hole to score 11 unanswered runs, including Emily Carosone’s walk-off grand slam in the bottom of the eighth. The loss snapped OU’s 31-game winning streak. It was the longest in school history by two games and tied for the 17th longest in NCAA history.

Game three is set for Wednesday night at 6 p.m. on ESPN.

This is the fifth time since the Championship Series was introduced in 2005 that a third game has been needed. The team that wins game two has won three of the four previous game threes. Last season, Florida became the first team to win game three after losing game two.

A staple of the Oklahoma offense in 2016 has been fast starts. Tuesday was no different as the Sooners scored seven runs over the first two innings.

In the first, senior Erin Miller reached on an error and then stole her 10th base of the season. After a popup, freshman Shay Knighten walked on four pitches. A sacrifice bunt from freshman Sydney Romero moved the runners in scoring position and freshman Fale Aviu brought in Miller when she beat out an infield single.

The Sooners then put up six runs in the top of the second, tying for the most in one inning in World Series Championship Series history.

Senior Kady Self led off with her fourth home run of the season, sending a line drive to left-center. Sophomore Lea Wodach then singled through the right side before freshman Raegan Rogers entered as a pinch runner. Sophomore Kelsey Arnold added a single to shortstop to put two runners on for Miller.

Like her first at-bat, Miller hit a ball to Whitney Jordan at shortstop, and like the first, Jordan committed an error. Rogers came in to score and Arnold and Miller found themselves in scoring position. Freshman Caleigh Clifton brought Arnold in with a squeeze bunt, while Knighten followed with a squeeze bunt of her own to bring in Miller to make it 5-0 for the Sooners.

Romero’s RBI single pushed the lead to 6-0, while sophomore Nicole Pendley’s run-scoring single to left field made it a 7-0 lead.

Auburn had an answer though with five runs in the bottom of the frame. The 11 combined runs marked the highest scoring inning in Championship Series history.

Jordan tried to atone for her two previous errors when she hit a three-run home run to left field. A misplay allowed No. 9 hitter Victoria Draper to reach safely after the home run, while Tiffany Howard drove her in with a triple to left field.

A pitching change came as freshman Jayden Chestnut replaced senior Kelsey Stevens, but Kasey Cooper greeted her with an RBI single to right field, cutting OU’s lead to 7-5. A hit by pitch and walk filled the bases, but Chestnut struck out Jade Rhodes to escape further damage.

Auburn completed the seven-run comeback in the bottom of the fourth when Kasey Cooper pulled a two-run shot into the bleachers in right field, knotting the game at 7-7.

Oklahoma looked like it might take the lead back in the top of the sixth as Clifton singled with two outs, bringing Knighten to the plate. On a 2-0 pitch she sent a deep drive to left field but Howard made a leaping catch at the wall to rob Knighten of her third World Series home run.

Stevens’ start marked the first time someone other than Paige Parker pitched in the postseason for OU this year. Making her first start since May 14, Stevens lasted 1.2 innings as she gave up five runs, though only three were earned as the Sooners uncharacteristically made two errors in the game. Stevens also struck out two and walked one while allowing two hits.

Chestnut took the first loss of her career as she now sits at 9-1. She allowed six runs on 11 hits with three strikeouts and two walks in 5.2 innings of work.

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