OKLAHOMA 7, FLORIDA 5 (17 INNINGS)
Oklahoma City, OK- It took five hours and twenty-eight minutes to determine a winner in the first game of the 2017 WCWS Championship Series. Oklahoma’s Shay Knighten hit a three-run home run in the top of the seventeenth to give the Sooners the victory in the longest game ever played in the WCWS.
Florida was down to their final strike twice but came back to tie the game up twice.
In the seventh inning and trailing 2-1, freshman Sophia Reynoso played hero for the Gators. Reynoso hit a high blooper into left center field that would fall, scoring Aleshia Ocasio. The ball managed to hit the grass in the outfield because Oklahoma was playing a “no-doubles” defense which positioned their outfielders on the warning track.
Both offenses were stagnant until the 12th inning. Oklahoma’s Fale Aviu hit a two run homer on a Delanie Gourley change up to take a 4-2 lead. The Gators would fight back in the bottom of the 12th though. Amanda Lorenz hit a double to left field to score Lily Mann and Sophia Reyoso and tie the game again.
The Gators went out fighting in the 17th as well as Lorenz would hit a sacrifice fly to left field to score Mann, but the threat ended with two runners on base when Kayli Kvistad finished an 0-7 night by striking out swinging.
Florida will now have to win two games in a row against Oklahoma, playing with an obvious home crowd advantage. Both of Florida’s pitchers threw well over 100 pitches and each were tagged for at least one home run.
It will be an uphill battle for Florida to win the National Championship, but if this Gators team showed us anything on Monday, it’s that they are willing to fight. Game two will be played at 8:00 PM on Tuesday.
WP: Paige Lowary (16-3)
LP: Kelly Barnhill (26-4)
- Knighten (OU) 3-7, HR, 2B, 3 RBI
- Reynoso (UF) 3-7, 2B, RBI, R
- Lorenz (UF) 2-7, 2B, 3 RBI