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Softball Team Readies for 'Neutral Site' Game vs. Oklahoma
Courtesy: Arizona Athletics
Release: 06/22/2004
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May 24, 2001

Arizona Softball - Friday, May 25 vs. Oklahoma Sooners (50-7)

Home Sweet Home - No, the Oklahoma Sooners actually play home games on the Norman campus about 30 minutes from Oklahoma City, but Hall of Fame Stadium in OKC will be loaded with plenty of red-clad OU supporters for the Women's College World Series. Thursday's OU-Michigan game, a 2-0 Sooner victory, was attended by 5,072 fans. A goodly amount showed up earlier for the Arizona-Cal game (the Wildcats won 3-2) but there's little question Friday's matchup between the Wildcats and Sooners will not be a neutral site.

Women's College World Series Game 5: the Wildcats (62-4 overall, 5-0 in NCAA play) meet Oklahoma (50-7, 5-0 in NCAA) in winner's bracket action at 6 p.m. Friday, with the winner to move into potential semi-final action Sunday. The loser drops into sudden-death quarter-final action in the other half of the bracket.

Arizona and Oklahoma This Year

The Wildcats beat the Sooners, 6-2, in Tucson on March 4. Leneah Manuma hit two home runs and Jennie Finch threw a four-hitter. It was the championship game of the Hillenbrand Invitational. OU had won four games in Tucson that weekend -- 10-1 over Indiana State, 2-1 over Baylor, 11-3 over Creighton and 10-1 over Western Michigan.

                Mar 04, 2001 at Tucson, Ariz. (Hillenbrand Stadium)

Oklahoma Sooners 2 (17-3) Arizona Wildcats 6 (27-0)

Player AB R H BI Player AB R H BI --------------------------------------- --------------------------------------- Christy Ring lf............ 4 0 0 0 Lauren Bauer cf............ 3 0 0 0 Kelli Braitsch ss.......... 4 0 0 0 Nicole Giordano lf......... 3 0 0 0 Lisa Carey 1b.............. 2 2 1 0 Toni Mascarenas 3b......... 2 2 0 0 Mandy Fulton dh............ 3 0 0 0 Leneah Manuma 1b........... 2 2 2 4 Ashli Barrett c............ 3 0 2 1 M. Vandergeest rf/dh....... 3 0 1 0 Erin Evans cf.............. 2 0 0 1 Lindsey Collins c.......... 3 0 0 0 Jennifer Stump rf.......... 3 0 0 0 Jennie Finch p............. 3 0 0 0 Leah Gulla 3b.............. 2 0 0 0 Allison Andrade ss......... 2 1 1 0 Andrea Davis ph........... 1 0 0 0 Kim Balkan dh/rf........... 3 1 1 2 LaKisha Washington 2b...... 2 0 1 0 Lisha Ribellia 2b.......... 0 0 0 0 Megan Hube ph............. 0 0 0 0 Adrianne Ratliff p......... 0 0 0 0 Totals..................... 26 2 4 2 Totals..................... 24 6 5 6

Score by Innings R H E ----------------------------------------- Oklahoma Sooners.... 101 000 0 - 2 4 1 Arizona Wildcats.... 202 200 X - 6 5 1 -----------------------------------------

E - Ring, Mascarenas. LOB - Oklahoma 6, Arizona 3. 2B - Barrett, Vandergeest. HR - Manuma 2, Balkan. SB - Washington.

Oklahoma Sooners IP H R ER BB SO WP BK HP IBB AB BF FO GO ---------------------------------------------------------------------------- Adrianne Ratliff L,7-2.... 6.0 5 6 4 3 3 0 0 0 1 24 27 6 9

Arizona Wildcats IP H R ER BB SO WP BK HP IBB AB BF FO GO ---------------------------------------------------------------------------- Jennie Finch W,9-0........ 7.0 4 2 1 3 7 0 0 0 0 26 29 5 9

Arizona and Oklahoma in NCAA Action

The Sooners beat the Wildcats 1-0 in last year's WCWS, the only post-season matchup of the teams. OU first baseman Lisa Carey had one of only four Sooners' hits off Arizona pitcher Becky Lemke, but one of them was a home run in the fourth that proved to be the margin of victory in the semi-final game. UA was coming out of the loser's bracket and was eliminated. Oklahoma moved into the title game and won the NCAA crown. Arizona, the nation's No. 2-ranked team throughout the year and the NCAA No. 2 seed, finished its season at 59-9.

Chalk Up Another WCWS Victory - Its victory against California gave Arizona a victory in 13 different College World Series. In all, Arizona is 37-17 in College World Series action, 42-5 in Regionals and overall at 79-22 in NCAA Tournament games.

UA Pitcher Jennie Finch - Won her 30th game against no defeats in opening WCWS action, helping beat California with 10 strikeouts. She became only the 10th Arizona pitcher in history to win 30 games, and the only one on the list without a loss.

Long Ball - Third baseman Toni Mascarenas clouted her 23rd home run of the year, the 122nd team round tripper of the season to extend that record. (UA broke its own team mark of 100 by the 1995 team.) Toni also picked up her 80th RBI with the three-run blast, the eighth highest total in UA season slugging history. Mascarenas has three of the seven UA homers in the postseason this year.

All-Americans - Arizona had five players named to the NFCA All-America teams at CWS banquet ceremonies Wednesday. First-team picks were junior pitcher Jennie Finch, senior thirdbaseman Toni Mascarenas, senior centerfielder Lauren Bauer and redshirt freshman DP/first baseman Leneah Manuma. Senior leftfielder Nicole Giordano earned third-team honors. Finch was a repeat pick from 2000. Mascarenas and Bauer were first-team picks as freshmen and second-team picks last year and Giordano earned third-team honors as a soph and second-team selection as a junior.

Streaking - Arizona has a 23-game winning streak, same as Oklahoma.

On the Road - Arizona is 13-2 at neutral sites and 26-4 away from home.

Crunch Time - Lest anyone suggest it's easy to play under pressure, note Arizona's batting averages - overall the team is hitting .344, in NCAA games the figure is .320 and in the one WCWS game this year UA had three hits for a .150 mark.

Miscellany...After its victory over Cal, Arizona is 22-2 against ranked teams... ...Toni Mascarenas' home run was her third in 12 World Series games, and she is 11-for-30 with 11 RBI at Oklahoma City...

...Jennie Finch improved her record to 2-1 in WCWS games...

...Nicole Giordano collected her ninth world series hit Thursday... Erika Hanson, a role player of considerable skill, notched her third career WCWS hit against Cal...

...Lauren Bauer saw her College World Series hitting streak end at six games, and her overall hitting streak end at 16 games with an 0-for-3 day vs. Cal...

 
 

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