Oregon State downs Cal to advance to WCWS
CORVALLIS, Ore. -- Brianne McGowan allowed only two hits and Vanessa Iapala's sacrifice fly in the first inning held up as Oregon State defeated California 1-0 Sunday to advance to the NCAA Women's College World Series.
The seventh-ranked Beavers (43-14) are among eight teams who will play for the national championship in Oklahoma City. Oregon State opens with Arizona on Thursday.
The sixth-ranked Bears (48-14) opened the Super Regional with a 2-1 victory over the Beavers on Friday, and after heavy rain Saturday postponed the event, the Beavers took both games on Sunday.
"All year the team has had the confidence to come back," McGowan said. "Even if we were down by three or four runs, it doesn't really matter because we know we have the ability to come back."
The loss snapped Cal's streak of seven straight trips to the World Series.
"It was great to see these athletes take hold of a goal and go for it," Beavers coach Kirk Walker said. "They were absolutely determined, it was going to be everything we had and go to Oklahoma City -- it was just phenomenal."
McGowan (29-7) had a no-hitter until a one-out single by Chloe Kloezman in the top of the fifth. The Bears put runners on base in both the sixth and seventh.
McGowan struck out nine in her second shutout of the day and 10th of the season.
Kristina Thorson (36-10) allowed the one run on six hits with eight strikeouts.
In the opening game, Mia Longfellow had three hits and drove in a run as Oregon State defeated Cal 3-0.
Oregon State jumped out to a 2-0 lead on RBI singles from Lisa Allen and Iapala in the first inning.
California put baserunners on second and third with two outs in the fifth inning, but junior McGowan struck out Alex Sutton to end the threat.
McGowan allowed six hits in the complete game shutout. She struck out eight.
Oregon State added a run on Longfellow's RBI single in the seventh inning.
Thorson allowed six hits in four innings of work for the loss.
"Today it was just a great game between two great teams and two great pitchers. I want to congratulate Kirk Walker and his staff and team. They came out today and scored on us early and kept the pressure on," Cal coach Diane Ninemire said. "They played tremendous softball defensively. Brianne did a great job keeping out batters off balance.
Arizona (49-10), Oregon State's opponent Thursday, is ranked third nationally.
Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press
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