Big 12 News

Three Thoughts on Oklahoma’s 4-2 Win Over Stanford to Advance to WCWS Final

The Oklahoma Sooners punched their ticket to the Women’s College World Series Finals with a 4-2 win against the Stanford Cardinal on Monday afternoon.

With the win, Oklahoma improves their record-setting mark to 59-1 on the year and eagerly awaits the winner of Florida State and Tennessee in the final round of the WCWS.

Meanwhile, the loss ends Stanford’s season with a record of 47-15 on the year and puts an end to their NCAA tournament run at the hands of the best team in the nation.

Here are a few thoughts on the win and what it means going forward.



Cardinal head coach Jessica Allister gave Alana Vawter the start against the Sooners and Vawter seized her opportunity. While going up against the best-hitting team in the nation is almost always a tall task, Vawter did a decent job of competing with the Sooners.

Vawter made it through four full innings in the circle and got some help from her infielders including a massive double play to end the fourth inning with runners on second and third. The Kansas City native gave up four hits, and two runs, and ended her day with two strikeouts before Allister made the call to bring in the nation’s leader in ERA, NiJaree Canady.

Canady stepped in and was nearly impossible to hit off of as it took an extra two innings to finish the game off. The freshman phenom went 5.0 IP, giving up four hits, two runs, and finished with six strikeouts.



With a battle between two of the best pitching staffs in the country, it only makes sense to see the two league leaders in ERA square off. While Stanford’s NiJaree Canady leads all of Division 1 softball with an ERA of 0.48 on the season, Oklahoma’s Nicole May is second in the country with an ERA of 0.82.

May had a rocky start to the game giving up the first runs scored against the Sooners in the first inning since May 5th against Oklahoma State. The Cardinal accomplished that with sophomore utility player Kylie Chung who sent a rise ball from May into the stratosphere giving Stanford an early 2-0 lead in the bottom of the first.

While May gave up two runs and three hits early on, she settled in and battled through the next four innings. Despite playing from behind, May retired the next thirteen Cardinal batters until the bottom of the sixth inning when the streak was broken on a single from outfielder Taylor Gindlesperger.

Head coach Patty Gasso then elected to bring in sophomore pitcher Jordy Bahl in relief of Nicole May putting an end to her day.



Happy Birthday Tiare Jennings! Junior infielder Tiare Jennings received the best birthday gift of all in Monday’s game, a fourth consecutive trip to the WCWS championship, and her name next to that of her former teammate Jocelyn Alo tying the NCAA record for the most RBIs in WCWS history (28).

Jennings struggled in the batter’s box going 0-4 in her first four at-bats against Stanford before heading to the plate in the top of the ninth to face Freshman Pitcher of the Year NiJaree Canady. Jennings stepped up to the plate with two outs down and two runners on base with Grace Lyons standing on third after a double to start the inning, and Jayda Coleman on first after being intentionally walked.

Jennings earned her first hit of the day down 0-2 in the count and drove the ball out to right field bringing in two runners with both Grace Lyons and Jayda Coleman scoring for the Sooners giving them a 4-2 lead with three outs to go.

Oklahoma now awaits the winner of Florida State and Tennesse who take the field at 6:00 PM CT. If Florida State can take down Tennessee one last time, they will advance to face Oklahoma in the championship game, but if the Volunteers bounce back and take down the Seminoles, Game Three’s first pitch is scheduled for 8:30 PM CST to decide who’s moving on, and who’s heading home.

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