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Cats Win Sixth NCAA Softball Title!
Courtesy: Arizona Athletics
Release: 06/22/2004
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May 28, 2001

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NCAA Softball College World Series Championship Game - Monday, May 28

OKLAHOMA CITY--Two signatures of 2001 Arizona softball -- pitching and home run power -- were underscored as the Wildcats beat UCLA for the NCAA softball championship, 1-0, Sunday before a crowd of 4,459 at Hall of Fame Stadium.

Jennie Finch's four-hit shutout and a fourth-inning home run by catcher Lindsey Collins made the biggest noise in Arizona's sixth Women's College World Series title.

Finch won her 32nd game against no defeats to establish an NCAA record for winning percentage and was named WCWS Most Outstanding Player for winning three games in UA's 4-0 sweep in Oklahoma City. Collins, who had only one hit in six WCWS at-bats entering the game, was one-for-three this time, but her 11th homer of the year was the game-winning hit and earned her All-Tournament honors.

 
 

The top-seeded and top-ranked Wildcats finished the year 65-4 and beat the team that had been ranked ahead of them for half the season. The Bruins, the No. 2 seed, ended the year 62-6.

Arizona's senior class maintained a streak begun in 1991 with coach Mike Candrea's first NCAA title -- every single four-year class since has won at least one national championship.

UA third baseman Toni Mascarenas, whose three home runs in previous Series games drove in seven of Arizona's 10 runs, also was named to the WCWS All-Tournament Team, as was Nicole Giordano, who had four hits and scored three runs in Oklahoma City.

It was Arizona's fourth championship game victory over UCLA among the Cats' six titles. UCLA beat Arizona, 4-2, in the 1995 championship game although the Bruins' title was later stripped by the NCAA for recruiting violations.

Finch won her 40th consecutive game dating to April 21, 2000 and became the first UA No. 1 pitcher to go undefeated in a season. It was her third shutout victory over UCLA in 2001 and 19th overall blanking. She struck out seven and walked two, one intentionally. The home run by Collins pushed Arizona's single-season NCAA record to 126 homers.

Collins homered to right-center with one out in the fourth to give Arizona a 1-0 lead. It was UA's fifth home run of the Series.

It also was Collins' third career home run in world series games, adding to the two she had in UA's 1999 WCWS opener against California.

Arizona had runners on first and second with one out in the third after a hit by Erika Hanson, a fielder's choice by Lauren Bauer and an error allowing Nicole Giordano aboard. But UCLA pitcher Amanda Freed got Toni Mascarenas and Leneah Manuma on soft infield liners.

Finch made two nice defensive plays in the bottom of the fifth, first diving for a popped bunt on a sacrifice attempt, then wheeling for the next out on a 1-6 force-out at second on another sac attempt.

Freed pitched out a jam in the UA sixth, spoiling a UA bid for a second run. Mascarenas led off with a walk, then moved to second on a ground-out. Jennie Finch singled to put runners at the corners with one out, but Freed struck ut Collins and got Mackenzie Vandergeest on a liner to second. UA managed only three hits off Freed (21-4), who got the loss.

Finch pitched out a jam in the bottom of the innning. Her errant throw after Watley singled off her glove put the Bruin speedster on second base to lead off the inning. Finch got Stephanie Ramos to fly out to left and retired Tairia Mims on a foul pop to third. The Cats then intentionally walked UCLA home run leader Stacey Nuveman and Finch got Clair Sua to pop to left to end the inning.

Finch struck out Courtney Dale, got Freed to pop out, and struck out Toria Auelua for the final out.


                             University of Arizona Softball
                            Arizona Wildcats vs UCLA Bruins
                  May 28, 2001 at Oklahoma City (Porter Hall of Fame)

Arizona Wildcats 1 (65-4) UCLA Bruins 0 (62-6)

Player AB R H BI Player AB R H BI --------------------------------------- --------------------------------------- Lauren Bauer cf............ 3 0 0 0 WATLEY ss.................. 3 0 1 0 Nicole Giordano lf......... 4 0 0 0 RAMOS cf................... 3 0 0 0 Toni Mascarenas 3b......... 1 0 0 0 MIMS 1b.................... 2 0 0 0 Leneah Manuma dh/1b........ 2 0 0 0 RAHN pr................... 0 0 0 0 Jennie Finch p............. 3 0 1 0 NUVEMAN c.................. 2 0 0 0 Lindsey Collins c.......... 3 1 1 1 HOSHIZAKI pr.............. 0 0 0 0 M. Vandergeest rf.......... 3 0 0 0 SUA dh..................... 3 0 0 0 Allison Andrade ss......... 3 0 0 0 DALE rf.................... 3 0 1 0 Erika Hanson 1b/dh......... 3 0 1 0 TORRES rf................. 0 0 0 0 Lisha Ribellia 2b.......... 0 0 0 0 FREED p.................... 3 0 1 0 AUELUA 3b.................. 3 0 1 0 SIMPSON pr................ 0 0 0 0 MEJIA 2b................... 2 0 0 0 BRAMBILA lf................ 0 0 0 0 Totals..................... 25 1 3 1 Totals..................... 24 0 4 0

Score by Innings R H E ----------------------------------------- Arizona Wildcats.... 000 100 0 - 1 3 1 UCLA Bruins......... 000 000 0 - 0 4 1 -----------------------------------------

E - Finch(2), AUELUA(2). LOB - Arizona 7, UCLA Bruins 5. HR - Collins(11). SB - Bauer(38), WATLEY(52).

Arizona Wildcats IP H R ER BB SO WP BK HP IBB AB BF FO GO ---------------------------------------------------------------------------- Jennie Finch W,32-0....... 7.0 4 0 0 2 7 0 0 0 1 24 26 9 4

UCLA Bruins IP H R ER BB SO WP BK HP IBB AB BF FO GO ---------------------------------------------------------------------------- FREED L,21-4.............. 7.0 3 1 1 4 6 0 0 0 0 25 29 8 7

Strikeouts - Collins, Vandergeest 2, Andrade 2, Hanson, WATLEY, RAMOS, NUVEMAN, SUA, DALE 2, AUELUA. Walks - Bauer, Mascarenas 2, Manuma, MIMS, NUVEMAN.

Umpires - Home:Lisa Harvey 1st:Marty Makar 3rd:James Welford Start: 12:15 pm Time: 2:26 Attendance: 4459 Game: 69

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