The game started strong and continued for most of the afternoon with few blemishes for Auburn Softball in their first game of the Women's College World Series.
Auburn scored 5 runs on only one hit in the first inning. It all started with Tiffany Howard getting hit by a pitch; one of four (a season high) Tigers hit in the first inning alone. A Kasey Cooper double was the lone hit of the inning. A few walks and other hit-by-pitches plus an E4 on a Victoria Draper slap hit led to the 5-0 lead.
Kaylee Carlson was excellent through most of the early innings. Auburn added another 2 runs in the 3rd inning thanks to an Emily Carosone single. UCLA didn't go quietly, though, as the Bruins got two quick hits and then a 3 run home run by Mysha Sataraka cut the lead to 4 in the top of the 4th inning. Back-to-back doubles by Jade Rhodes and Haley Fagan got one back for the Tigers in the bottom half of the inning, though.
Auburn had a chance to end it in the 5th as they loaded the bases with 2 walks and a Jade Rhodes infield single, but Haley Fagan struck out to end the inning. UCLA threatened in the Top 6th with two early base runners, but three straight pop flies got the Tigers out of the inning.
The Bruins got 2 outs on Auburn in the Bottom of the 6th and, then, as they always seem to do with 2 down, the Tigers got things going. A walk, a Tiffany Howard infield single, and a Kasey Cooper double put 2 more runs on the board to get the score to 10-3. Emily Carosone came to the plate with a chance to end it all, but popped out to center field.
Kaylee Carlson finished the game off with another complete game filled with only two strikeouts and two walks. She pitched yet another complete game in yet another masterful pitching performance.
Auburn will now face #16 Georgia, who knocked off #8 Florida State 5-4 in the first session, today. The Tigers and Dawgs met during the regular season in a 3 game series in Auburn which the Tigers swept. It won't be easy, though, as Georgia is on a hot streak having knocked off #1 Florida on the road in the Gainesville Super Regional and now beating Florida State. The Dawgs will be looking for revenge for the earlier sweep. That game will take place Friday night at 7:00pm Eastern.