Trailing 4-3 and down to a single out, OU fans at the Women’s College World Series clamored for a bit of Sooner Magic. Stepping up to the plate, Shay Knighten delivered a hit. Sailing over the wall, the senior first baseman sent the crowd into a frenzy as the game waged on into the night.
Taking the field, Giselle Juarez stepped into the circle. Picking up the ball, the lefty hoped to stifle the portion of the UCLA Bruins’ lineup that gave her troubles in the previous outing. Delivering the pitch to Taylor Pack, the batter recorded a single and later moved to second on a sac-bunt from Brianna Tautalafua.
Now in scoring position with a single out, Pack hoped to move sixty feet closer to home plate with Colleen Sullivan up to bat. Connecting with the ball, Sullivan drove the pitch toward short-stop Grace Lyons. The freshman gathered the ball and made a veteran’s decision by throwing out the lead runner.
With a runner on first and down to a single out, the Bruins looked to end the Championship Series in dramatic fashion. After Sullivan moved to second on a pass-ball, Coach Kelly Inouye-Perez, elected to pinch run a speedster in Jacqui Prober.
One pitch, one swing, and one decision would ultimately decide the fate of the Sooners.
OU’s Juarez hurled the ball inside toward fellow left-handed player and UCLA Bruin, Kinsley Washington — the pitch. Swinging the bat, the sophomore caught the ball close the hands — the swing. Soaring up and toward left-center field, the defense swarmed as the runners went in motion. Tracking the ball down, Fale Aviu chopped her feet allowed the ball to hit the turf instead of attempting the diving catch — the decision. Grabbing the ball of the bounce, the senior reared back before throwing to home plate.
Making the catch, Linnsie Elam stretched out to apply the tag on Prober. Narrowing missing, the runner touched home plate effectively ended the softball season with a UCLA Championship.