NO.16 CLEMSON LOSES SUPER REGIONAL HEARTBREAKER 8-7 IN 9 INNINGS AT NO.1 OKLAHOMA TO END SEASON
- 2023-05-28 14:44:38
Well, it seemed like the Tigers were given an almost impossible task to have to go to Norman to play 54-1 Oklahoma, the two-time Defending Champs, in the Super Regional. The Selection Committee definitely screwed the Tigers because there were at least 5 teams seeded ahead of them that shouldn't have been. After the Tigers lost the opener 9-2, they wouldn't go down without a fight.
At first, it looked like the Sooners might cruise to a CWS berth. McCubbin gave up back-to-back homers to start the game and another solo shot in the 4th. She hit the next batter, and Thompson came in from the pen, hitting another batter and giving up a walk to load the bases. She gave up a sac grounder to make it 4-0.
The Tigers' offense finally woke up in the 4th, though, when Moore hit a 2-out, 3-run HR to make it 4-3. Freshman Ruszkowski led off the 5th with a single, her first hit in forever, and Clark hit a 2-run HR to give the Tigers their first lead of the series 5-4. With the bases loaded, Logoleo walked in a run, and Moore hit a sac grounder to make it 7 unanswered runs and a 7-4 Clemson lead.
After Thompson gave up a single to lead off the 6th, Cagle came into the circle and went 1-2-3. The Tigers were just 3 outs away from evening the series, but Cagle gave up a leadoff single in the 7th and another with 2 outs. That set the stage for an absolute gut punch. On an 0-2 pitch, just one strike away from the win, Cagle gave up a 3-run HR to tie the game 7-7. As great as Cagle is, we've seen that happen to her a few times in the last month. The Sooners hit a leadoff HR off Cagle in the 9th, and Clark's 2-out single in the bottom half would go for naught, as Miklesh flied out to end the Super Regional.
It was another great season for the Tigers, but they ran into perhaps the greatest team of all time on their own field. If the Tigers had been sent to any other Super Regional, I truly believe they would have taken that next step and made their first CWS appearance. They didn't go down without a fight, though, and Cagle should still be named National Player of the Year.
Post-game interviews are below!
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