So far for the Pac-12 the defending National Champions No. 3 Arizona State and No. 11 Oregon both secured spots at the Women's College World Series in Oklahoma City, Okla. in come-from-behind wins in the Super Regionals. The WCWS runs May 31 through June 6.
Oregon earned its first ever Super Regional win in school history and will be playing at the WCWS for just the second time and first since 1989, before presumably many of the Ducks were born.
The Sun Devils and the Ducks join Alabama (SEC), Oklahoma (Big 12) and first-timers South Florida (Big East), teams that also won their respective Super's.
After losing to No. 14 Louisiana-Lafayette in game one, 6-0, the Sun Devils threw their pitch forks at the Ragin' Caguns and came back with two wins, 9-2 and 8-0 in six, to earn the Tempe Super Regional series and their 10th appearance at the WCWS. Eight home runs between the final two games helped hurl ASU, with two from both Sam Parlich and Alix Johnson.
"First thing I will say is how proud I am of these ladies," said ASU head coach Clint Myers postgame. "They played with great heart and showed great character. We stood out there 24 hours ago and talked to them about if anything has been true all season long it is to never give in, never die, never roll over, as long as we got a breath we have a chance.
"Great teams figure out a way to win. If you look through the lineup there was success one through nine. This was a great team win. Dallas was phenomenal, defense was outstanding but again they played their butts off."
In game two, ASU held a 7-0 lead in the top of the third after a 2-run homer by Amber Freeman, a double from Haley Steele, a 2-run long shot by Annie Lockwood and a solo home run by Parlich. ULL fired back in the bottom for one run on a Brianna Cherry RBI-single before ASU answered with a bases loaded walk in the fourth for an 8-1 score. ULL fired again and scored in the fifth on an ASU error, but Parlich closed the game for the final 9-2 score with her second homer of the game in the top of the seventh.
Hillary Bach (21-1) earned the win, tossing one strikeout and only two walks.
ASU kept its home run hitting hot in the "if necessary" game from the first as Johnson and Steele hit back-to-back homers in the bottom. Elizabeth Caporuscio, second on the team in homers, followed, hitting a 2-run shot for the 4-0 lead. The Sun Devils added three on three hits in the fifth and Steele secured the mercy-rule victory with an RBI-single.
Dallas Escobedo (23-6) won the third game throwing 6.0 innings for seven strikeouts and just five hits.
"I know that if we can come out these games the way we can, I mean those last two games were ASU softball every second and if we can overcome that right now we are only going to be that much stronger if we lose a game early on," said ASU first baseman Annie Lockwood postgame on facing adversity.
Oregon slipped 4-2 in game one to six-seeded Texas but took control in games two and three, winning 5-4 in eight innings and 10-6, respectively, for the Austin Super Regional win.
"We tried to get on top early to put pressure on them," said Oregon head coach Mike White, "and it worked. My hat's off to our pitcher Jessica Moore. She really worked extremely hard. I know she's going to be tired. It's been a long two or three weeks for her since she's pitched every game pretty much since Regionals."
Moore (32-13) tossed complete games in both meetings and has pitched every inning of the post season except one. On Saturday Moore earned eight combined strikeouts and now has 244 on her junior year, upping her previous school record of 238 in a season from her freshman year.
"I knew I needed to be stronger than I was yesterday," Moore said, "and the team picked me up huge today. It was awesome going out there and pitching with a lead all day."
In game two, Oregon got on board first, racking up three runs in the bottom of the first. Then Texas came fighting with four between the second and third. Oregon tied it 4-all in the bottom of the fifth and secured the win in the bottom of the seventh with a single run.
A six-run second inning propelled the Ducks from early on in game three.
The first three batters reached base after being hit, Alexa Peterson doubled and Moore had an RBI fielder's choice. Lindsey Chambers added a run on a sac fly, Janie Takeda doubled for a run on a fielding error, Samantha Pappas added an RBI-single and scored on an RBI-single by Kaylan Howard and Kelsey Chambers scored the sixth on a double.
The Ducks added four more in the fourth frame. Texas scored three in both the fourth and seventh.
Pappas was 2-for-4 with 3 RBI and one homer, Howard was 2-for-4 with 1 RBI, Chambers was 2-for-4 with 2 RBI and Peterson was 2-for-4. Moore was 1-for-3 with a season-high 2 RBI.
STILL PLAYING FOR THE PAC-12:
No. 1 California vs. No. 16 Washington in the Berkeley Super Regional
In game one the No. 1 seed shutout Washington 5-0. Game two is scheduled for Sunday, May 27 at 7 p.m. PT with the "if necessary" game to follow.
No. 13 Arizona
Lost game one to Oklahoma 6-0 and game two 7-1 in the Norman Super Regional.
Now that Oregon and ASU have advanced into the WCWS, which remaining Pac-12 team will earn a spot?
No. 1 California (26 votes)
No. 16 Washington (3 votes)
29 total votes