Alabama forces decisive Game 3


OKLAHOMA CITY — Jackie Traina and Amanda Locke each had three-run doubles and Alabama forced a decisive third game in the Women’s College World Series finals by beating Oklahoma 8-6 on Tuesday night.


Traina laced a double to the warning track in left-center field with two outs in the second inning, putting the second-seeded Crimson Tide (59-8) ahead to stay.

Kaila Hunt, a former Greenbrier standout, added a sacrifice fly for the Crimson Tide, who are trying to become the first Southeastern Conference team to win the NCAA softball title.

Jessica Shults drove in four runs, including a three-run home run during a five-run rally by Oklahoma (54-9) in the seventh inning.

In a reversal of Game 1, it was Alabama that roared right back after allowing the first run of the game.

Locke, who reached on third baseman Javen Henson’s error, came in to score when Henson couldn’t catch a flip from shortstop Jessica Vest on Jennifer Fenton’s two-out chopper as Jazlyn Lunceford slid in head first. Ricketts then hit Hunt on the right forearm for the second consecutive time, loading the bases before Traina cleared them with her liner to the track.

Locke made it 8-1 with her three-run double – also with two outs and also to left-center – off of reliever Michelle Gascoigne in the fourth.

Ricketts (37-8) lasted only 3⅓ innings, giving up a season-worst six runs and setting a World Series record by hitting five batters with pitches.

The Sooners didn’t get to Traina (41-3) until the final inning. Destinee Martinez and Brianna Turang each had triples, and Erica Sampson’s run-scoring groundout got Oklahoma within 8-6.

Traina then struck out Henson to end the game.



MONDAY: Oklahoma 4, Alabama 1

TUESDAY: Alabama 8, Oklahoma 6

TODAY: Alabama vs. Oklahoma, 8 p.m.