Two Big 12 teams are headed to the 2014 Women’s College World Series after victories Saturday and Sunday. Baylor and Oklahoma will represent the Conference in Oklahoma City and compete for a national championship.
The league will send two teams to the WCWS in back-to-back seasons and the fifth time in conference history. Dating back to 2000, the Big 12 has sent at least one team to the WCWS each year, with three teams advancing in 1998. A total of 26 league teams have appeared in the WCWS since 1997, the second most among conferences.
The Lady Bears advanced to their third WCWS with a 6-3 win over the Georgia Bulldogs Saturday at Jack Turner Stadium.
Baylor, the No. 13 seed, trailed 3-2 heading into the bottom of the fifth inning before Linsey Hays hit the go-ahead two-run homer deep over the right field wall that proved to be the game winner. Whitney Canion battled through a 169-pitch effort to pick up her 31st win of the season and help carry the Lady Bears to their third WCWS appearance since 2007.
Oklahoma’s offense was held in check by Tennessee starter Ellen Renfroe as the Sooners saw their 16-game win streak end with a 4-0 loss to the No. 10 Lady Vols in game two of the Norman Super Regional Saturday.
OU’s bats came alive in game three as the Sooners recorded five homeruns on the day, including three in the sixth inning to help clinch an 8-2 victory over the Lady Vols and a fourth-straight trip to the WCWS.
OU moved to 50-11 on the year, its 10th season with at least 50 wins. The Sooners will look to defend their WCWS crown, after claiming the title over Tennessee last season.
The WCWS begins May 29 with a double-elimination tournament, with the finals consisting of a best-of-three-series.