The no. 2 UCLA softball team was not messing around in the first game of the best-of-three Women’s College World Series as they took down no. 1 Oklahoma, 16-3.
A few weeks before the regular season ended, the UCLA softball team, which had hung onto the no. 1 spot in the rankings for a few weeks, suddenly found themselves second to Oklahoma.
Though minuscule the Bruins slipped even further as the regular season was drawing to a close when Washington overtook them in second, bumping them down to third. An unusual move by the voters to overlook UCLA, who had only lost two games up until that point.
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Still, it was not the ranking that mattered, it is what they do on the field that counts, and the Bruins did more than prove that are the top team in the nation on Monday evening when they whipped Oklahoma, 16-3.
Not only was this a massive victory for UCLA, but it was also the biggest victory in the Women’s College World Series championship round as the Bruins’ 16 runs set a record.
So where do we begin? Let us start with the fact that the Bruins scored in all but one inning in this game. They had an astounding 16 hits. Four of those went for home runs which led to 14 RBIs. Aaliyah Jordan, Brianna Tautalafua, Briana Perez, and Rachel Garcia were the Bruins responsible for launching one over the wall.
UCLA had nine different bats get a hit, five of which had multiple hits. The Bruins were led by Kinsley Washington who went 4/4 at the plate. Garcia, the two-time USA Player of the Year, had two hits of her own to go with one earned run in five innings.
Both Megan Faraimo and Holly Azevedo had relieved Garcia with an inning to themselves and gave up a run each. Still, to have a combined one strikeout and only give up three total runs says a lot about what they can do with fielding on the defensive side of the ball.
Though this was a dominant win, it is not over. The Bruins showed their mettle in Game 1, but they still need to win a second to claim the 2019 National Championship and UCLA’s 118th. We will see what they can do when they take on Oklahoma in Game 2 on Tuesday at 5:30 p.m. If necessary, Game 3 will take place on Wednesday.