OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. – In a duel with national player of the year, Florida State pitcher Lacey Waldrup, Oregon lefthander Cheridan Hawkins and the Ducks came out on top 3-0 win in the Women's College World Series opener for both teams.
The top-ranked Ducks (55-7-1), who set a program record for victories in a season, advanced to face Florida on Friday (4 p.m. PT, ESPN2). The then-No. 1 Gators beat Oregon, 2-1 in eight innings in the preseason.
After giving up a lead-off single to Florida State’s first team All-America shortstop, Maddie O’Brien, Hawkins forced a groundout before walking Courtney Senas to put two runners on.A mound visit from head coach Mike White, who had done the same to focus Hawkins in the second Super Regional game against Minnesota, worked wonders as Hawkins struck out the next batter before escaping the first inning with a groundout.
Hawkins, a fellow first team All-America choice of Waldrup’s, was untouchable following the first inning. Hawkins, a sophomore, retired 16 consecutive batters before Florida State put a runner on with two outs in the sixth following an Oregon error.
Hawkins (34-4) picked up the win and her 12th shutout of the season after allowing no runs on one hit with six strikeouts.
With Hawkins in a dominating groove, the Oregon offense played small ball to slowly build a lead.
The Ducks had 10 hits off Waldrup, tied for the most the FSU pitcher has allowed in her career. The Seminoles made a pitching change in the sixth inning after a leadoff bunt single by Sammie Puentes.
Oregon jumped out to an early 1-0 lead in the first inning. Alyssa Gillespie and Janie Takeda hit back-to-back singles and Gillespie scored on a Janelle Lindvall groundout.
The Ducks manufactured another run in the second inning. Alexa Peterson started the second with a single and moved to second on a sacrifice bunt by Karine Shaver. That brought up freshman Nikki Udria, who came through with a big two-out single to score Peterson from second.
Oregon came through with another two-out run, this time in the fifth, to make it 3-0. With the bases clear, Koral Costa ripped a double down the left field line. Peterson followed with a double to nearly the same place, scoring Costa from second.