For the first time all season, No. 3 Oregon (49-10) lost at Howe Field, 5-2, to the bats of No. 14 Nebraska (44-13) in the opening game of the Eugene Super Regional. The Ducks are now 19-1 at home and the Huskers remain an undefeated 4-0 in postseason play, as they snapped Oregon's nation-leading 24-game home winning streak, dating back to last spring.
The Ducks, down 5-0 going into the bottom of the seventh, got a little relief when Samantha Pappas (1-for-3) and Kaylan Howard (1-for-3) each scored, but ultimately it wasn't enough for the Ducks.
Pappas singled to left center, advanced to second on Howard's single up the middle, tagged third when Janelle Lindvall walked, and plated on Jessica Moore's groundout to second. On that play, Howard advanced to third and then scored on a Nebraska shortstop error in Koral Costa's at-bat.
The game was scoreless until the top of the fifth but Nebraska freshman Alicia Armstrong (2-for-3) put a tally on the board when she scored from third on Gabby Banda's single to center. Then, with Jordan Bettiol on third, Tatum Edwards on second and Banda on first, senior Brooke Thomason (1-for-4), on a 2-2 count with two outs, homered to right center for a grand slam, upping Nebraska's edge to 5-0.
In the bottom, Oregon tried to get on board, but Howard, Lindvall and Moore all grounded out.
Big 10 Pitcher of the Year, junior Tatum Edwards (30-8), struck out two, walked three, allowed one earned run and held Oregon to five hits. Edwards earned the fourth 30-win season in school history.
Pac-12 Pitcher of the Year, senior Moore (27-5), fanned three, walked three, allowed six hits and all five runs were earned. Karissa Hovinga, pitching the final two innings, struck out three and allowed two hits.
Oregon needs two wins tomorrow, May 26, to advance to the Women's College World Series. Game two is scheduled for 3:00 p.m. ET/12:00 p.m. PT. If Oregon wins, the "if necessary" game would start approximately 45 minutes after the end of game two.