Sooners Claim Third National Title
|W - Parker (38-3)||7.0||5||1||1||1||5|
|L - Martin (15-4)||6.0||5||2||0||2||1|
|S - N/A||-||-||-||-||-||-|
|OU - Aviu||3||0||2||1||0||0|
|AUB - Rhodes||3||1||2||1||0||1|
OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. – Paige Parker pitched a complete game to help Oklahoma defeat Auburn 2-1 on Wednesday night for its third national softball title.
Parker put the Tigers down in order in the seventh to improve to 5-0 at the Women's College World Series.
Auburn's Emily Carosone, the star of Tuesday's comeback win with a grand slam in the bottom of the eighth, couldn't follow it up.
In the bottom of the first, she committed an error on a grounder by Shay Knighten, and Caleigh Clifton scored for the Sooners (57-8) when Carosone lost control of a throw to first. Knighten then scored on a slow-bouncing infield single by Fale Aviu to make it 2-0.
Auburn (58-12) loaded the bases with no outs in the third, but Parker struck out Carosone, then the Sooners turned a double play to get out of the inning unscathed.
Jade Rhodes' solo shot in the top of the fourth made it 2-1, but Parker regained control.
Oklahoma won its first two titles in 2000 and 2013. The Southeastern Conference had won three of the previous four, with Oklahoma interrupting.
Oklahoma coach Patty Gasso was questioned about the decision to rest Parker during Game 2, when Auburn rallied from an early 7-0 deficit to beat the Sooners 11-7 in eight innings. Parker was the winner in Game 1, a 3-2 decision, and Gasso felt it would have been unfair to Parker to start her on Tuesday.
Parker came back refreshed. She threw 107 pitches, struck out five and walked one.
Carosone went 0 for 3 with two strikeouts and two errors.
Auburn, which was seeking its first national title, snapped Oklahoma's 31-game win streak on Tuesday to force Game 3. The Sooners hadn't lost since April 2.
The Sooners went through Alabama, Michigan, LSU and Auburn to win the title.