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Sunday, June 05, 2016

WCWS Day 4 (2016)

It will be Oklahoma vs. Auburn for the national title in a two-out-of-three series beginning Monday night. Below are my comments from the four games played Sunday (I caught more of some games than of others)...

LSU vs. OKLAHOMA -- OU 3-0, top third... After LSU ties it, Oklahoma pulls away again to win 7-3.

FLORIDA STATE vs. AUBURN -- Tied 3-3, with the Seminoles batting in the top of the third... FSU single drives in runner from third for 4-3 lead... Jade Rhodes socks three-run homer for Auburn, giving Tigers 6-4 lead in bottom of third... Kasey Cooper blasts a two-out solo shot in bottom of fourth, increasing Auburn lead to 7-4... Beautiful catch by Tigers' Victoria Draper, with FSU having runners on first and second with one out, top sixth. Saves one or two runs. The catch appears about a minute and a half into this highlight video... Walk loads bases for Seminoles, though, with two outs... Alex Powers fly-out to center ends threat... Top 7: Noles down to final hacks, trailing 7-4... Single and walk put two on with none out... Cali Harrod hits three-run homer to tie game! (distance marker)... FSU still up in tie game... Bases loaded (via two walks and HBP) with two out... Grounder to short ends threat... With one out, Auburn gets runner on first, as FSU shortstop can't snare liner... Next two retired... Going to extras... Leadoff walk top eighth for FSU... No score for Seminoles, Tigers coming up in bottom of eighth... Auburn's Madi Gipson standing on third with no outs, after single and Seminole error... Safe on close play at the plate on infield grounder... I thought runner was going to be out, but replay shows she got in safely... Auburn wins 8-7 to advance to finals, FSU done...

LSU vs. GEORGIA (ELIMINATION GAME) -- LSU leads Georgia 2-1, Tigers batting in the bottom of the fourth... Now 3-1 Tigers, as they bat in the bottom of the sixth... Now 4-1... Dawgs come up in top of seventh, needing at least three runs to keep their season alive... UGA goes quietly, LSU stays alive with 4-1 win.

MICHIGAN vs. FLORIDA STATE (ELIMINATION GAME) -- Scoreless game, but the Seminoles have runners on first and second with two outs in the bottom of the third... Walk loads bases... Run scores on wild-pitch... Walk reloads the bases... Weak foul pop to 3B side ends inning... Fast-forward to Top 6: UM's Abby Ramirez leads off with single to left, only Wolverines' second hit of day. The two Sierras coming up... Lawrence grounds to pitcher for out at first... Sierra Romero, in what may be her last collegiate at-bat, comes up with tying run at second... The suspense builds... Romero walks on five pitches, perhaps an "unintentional intentional walk." Kelly Christner up... Flies out to center, runners can't advance... Up to Kelsey Susalla... Grounds out to second to end half-inning... Still 1-0 FSU... Michigan comes up for final swings in top of the seventh. Score or go home... Tera Blanco leads off... Fouling pitches off at 0-2... Blanco works count to 3-2, then called out looking at borderline inside pitch... Aidan Falk up... Singles to right... Lindsay Montemarano up... Pop-up bunt for second out... (Comment as a Michigan fan: Why bunt???)... Amanda Vargas represents last hope for Michigan... Pop out to first... 1-0 FSU win, Wolverines' season over...

I'm pretty open about being a Michigan fan, as shown in this Twitter "tweet" from the eve of last year's WCWS championship round. With most of last year's national runner-up team returning, I was pretty optimistic about this year. With two-time defending champion Florida off to a hot start this season and seemingly difficult to dethrone, my motto for Michigan was "Championship Round or Bust." Once Florida got eliminated in the super-regionals, however, my motto changed to "National Title or Bust." Well, the season ends "Bust." Too bad for the two Sierras and the other seniors. It was good to get back to the WCWS, but I (and probably many other Wolverine fans) were looking for bigger things. Go Blue!  

Here is the loss chart, showing where all of the teams currently stand...

No LossesOne LossTwo Losses (Gone)
MichiganFlorida StateFlorida State