Wednesday, June 06, 2007

2007 WCWS Game 3

ORANGE CRUSHED -- Arizona Wins National Title

Congratulations to the Wildcats!

Last chance for Tennessee... Schutzler strikes out... Callahan likewise... Huff walks... Doepking grounds out to third...

Dare I say it, the Vols have runners on first and second with no outs in the sixth... After a fly out to left, a wild pitch (or passed ball) puts both runners in scoring position for Posey... An infield hit to third loads the bases for Tennessee's most clutch hitter, Chiles... A liner down the left-filed stripe just goes foul by about 2 feet! Chiles bloops one up behind third base (probably going foul), nice catch by Fox for the second out... Danielle Pieroni to pinch hit (what a spot for a newcomer)... hanging in there with a 3-2 count... strikes out swinging, ending the inning and extending Mowatt's scoreless-inning streak to 16 (during the at-bat, the announcers had quoted the figure at 15 2/3)...

Tennessee now has six offensive outs to score at least five runs... Doesn't seem too likely, does it?

U of A's Lowe gets her third infield hit, a dribbler to the circle. By the time Abbott picks up the ball and turns around to throw, it's futile... Arredondo belts a double to left... Second and third, no outs... Fox gets another intentional walk, loading the bases... Leles singles hard up the middle, driving in two runs... 2-0 Arizona...... Three-run homer for Chelsie Mesa, 5-0 Arizona...

Chiles leads off with an infield hit... During one of the breaks, Vol co-coach Ralph Weekly was interviewed about his team's Left On Base problem (14 yesterday, 6 tonight at the time of the interview). The coaches had the players study videotape of their previous at-bats against Taryne Mowatt, but, as Weekly contended, the Tennessee batters still weren't executing... Kajitani then pops a bunt up, illustrating Weekly's point... Schutzler gets a sharp groundball single to left, runners on first and second, one out... Callahan up, but the count quickly becomes 0-2... leading to a strikeout on three pitchers... It's up to Huff, with two outs... Abbott, who was pretty calm in the dugout in similar situations last night, is now seated alone in the position of the famous statue, The Thinker... Huff strikes out. Another donut, bagel, [fill in circular object of your choice] for Tennessee. Still scoreless, going to the bottom of the fifth...

A rare quick half-inning (for either team) as Abbott seems to regain her groove. Up come the Vols to start off the fifth...

A couple of between-inning observations, both initially pointed out by the televisions announcers: (1) Whether it's the same or a different home-plate ump tonight relative to last night, the pitchers seem to be getting a smaller strike zone; and (2) given Tennessee's difficulties in advancing runners by swinging away, the team may start bunting more (as was done last half-inning).

Tennessee's Shannon Doepking leads off the fourth with a walk... Clay in a marathon at-bat, fouling off pitches with a 3-2 count... she strikes out, swinging at a pitch that was in the next county (that's how far outside it was)... Horiuchi bunts the runner to second, two outs... Anita Manuma pinch-hitting for Posey... ground-out to first, still scoreless...

Lowe leads off the bottom of the third with another infield single, bunted to second by Arredondo, one out... Intentionally walked, Kristie Fox trots to first... Leles up, takes the count to 3-1, the Vol catcher goes to the circle to calm down Abbott, but she walks Leles on the next pitch, anyway... Bases loaded, one out for Chelsie Mesa... On a 2-2 pitch, it's a close call, and the ump says "ball," 3-2... Now here's a bizarre play -- Mesa hits a short, bouncing blooper between first and second and Leles, heading to second, collides with the second-baseperson Posey. Leles is called out for interference... Bases still loaded, no runs, two outs... Abbott K's the next batter, ending the threat... The ledger's a little more balanced now in terms of squandered opportunities...

Kenora Posey leads off with a bloop hit to shallow left... Posey steals second, India Chiles facing a 3-2 count at the plate... I know I've said it a bunch of times, but Chiles continues to amaze, beating out an inning grounder even with her recent (mid-May) ACL tear... First and second (Posey was being held), no outs (like Tennessee hasn't had situations like this before -- smirk)... Nicole Kajitani, inserted as part of the Vols' line-up transformation, K's for the first out... Lindsay Schutzler pops out... Those Tennessee fans must be thinking, "We've seen this movie before..." Tonya Callahan at the plate, 2-0 count... she walks, loading the bases with two out, up comes Tiffany Huff... She strikes out... Call it cynicism on my part, or call it realism, but Tennessee again fails to capitalize on a promising opportunity...

The Wildcats' Callista Balko gets her first hit of the 2007 World Series, a sharp double to the wall in left... A ground-out to Abbott ends the inning... Still scoreless, going to the third...

Tonya Callahan leads off the second with a solid single to right... After a strikeout by the next batter, Shannon Doepking bunts for a base hit down the third-base line. U of A lets the ball keep rolling, thinking (or hoping) it will go foul, but it never does. There've been a couple of other bunts like that this World Series... Lowe makes an excellent catch on a drive to left-center by Alexia Clay... A strike-out ends the inning... Going to the bottom of the second, 0-0...

After a scoreless top of the first, Caitlin Lowe, who's been quiet in this series, leads off for Arizona with an infield single... K'Lee Arredondo follows with a walk... The next batter (probably Kristie Fox) is out on a pop/blooper to the shortstop, who is standing on second as she makes the catch. A freeze-frame on the replay shows that Lowe should have been called out trying to get back to the bag, but she isn't... Jenae Leles strikes out, two down... Chelsie Mesa fouls out to end the inning...

Here we go! Arizona's the home team, so Tennessee is batting first. Vol co-coaches Ralph and Karen Weekly have scrambled the line-up a little bit...