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OSU Softball: Cowgirls Run-Rule Utes to Stay Alive in WCWS

The Cowgirls flip the script to stay alive in OKC.



[Devin Wilber/PFB]

A night after being weather-delayed twice and run-ruled once by Florida State, the Cowgirls enacted their own mercy rule so they could hit the hotel early.

No. 6 Oklahoma State defeated No. 15 Utah 8-0 in an elimination game of the 2023 Women’s College World Series thanks to an explosive — and strange — second inning and some stingy defense throughout.

Katelynn Carwile was 0-for-8 in OKC last season. On Friday, she gave the Cowgirls their first score of the WCWS with a two-run single in the first that skipped into right field.

The second inning was a weird one, though it set the table for Oklahoma State’s early win. The Cowgirls scored six runs before they got their first out. Those six scores came on 18 pitches to seven batters. Here’s how it happened.

On the first pitch in the bottom of the second, Taylor Tuck smacked a double into left field. Kenny Gajewski immediately called for a sac-bunt by Megan Bloodworth. But, in an apparent miscommunication, Tuck stayed stagnant at second while an infield hop on that bunt allowed Bloodworth to make it safely to first. That was just the beginning.

Next up, Rachel Becker’s single loaded the bases with no outs to set up Chyenne Factor’s single RBI. After an early Utah pitching change, Kiley Naomi tapped another run in with a single before Factor crossed home plate on a wild pitch. Morgyn — whose first-inning single loaded the bases to set up the Cowgirls’ first two runs — sent a ball bouncing off the left field wall to score two more. Then Carwile’s single scored Wynne to make it 8-0 still with just one out.

We’re still in the second. Here’s where it got weirder.

Tallen Edwards reached on a fielding error to load the bases once again, but Utah closed it out thanks to an interference call when Tuck (who led off the inning) struck out and then stepped in front of Utah’s catcher and a would-be throw to second bounced off her helmet awarding the Utes a double-play.

On Thursday, the Cowgirls went 4-22 with zero runs to find themselves facing elimination. On Friday, they went 8-20 with eight runs in just five innings. Their bats came to life, but’s only half of the run-rule equation.

From the circle, Lexi Kilfoyl kept the other side of the scoreboard clean for five innings, allowing three hits and striking out three while walking one. She moved to 16-5 on the year. But it was not without a bit of fifth-inning drama.

Needing just three outs to earn her team an early trip to the hotel, Kilfoyl saw Utes advance to second and third with no outs after a single and error. She then got her first out snagging a line drive that just missed her head, before striking out the next batter swinging and collecting her third out with a ground-out to first base.

The win keeps the Cowgirls alive. OSU will play Sunday night at 7 p.m. against the loser of Saturday’s Game 7 between Oklahoma and Tennessee.

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