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Katherine Wright | | June 16, 2020

A brief history of grand slams at the Women's College World Series

Watch every Women's College World Series grand slam since 2009

Twelve grand slams have been hit since the inception of the NCAA Women's College World Series in 1982. All but one transpired within the last decade. That's right — 11 of the 12 total grand slams in the Women's College World Series history were hit between 2009-19.

Some grand slams were walk-offs; others saved teams from elimination. Five different teams were a part at least two WCWS games that featured grand slams — Alabama (4), Florida (3), Georgia (3), UCLA (3) and Washington (2).

Below is a rundown of all 11 grand slams hit since the 2009 WCWS. You can watch all of them in the video at the top of this article.

Jazlyn Lunceford, Alabama (6) vs. Arizona State (2) on May 30, 2009

Alabama Athletics Jazlyn Lunceford of Alabama softball grand slam

The situation: Facing elimination, pinch-hitter Jazlyn Lunceford stepped into the left batter's box with the bases loaded and two out. Arizona State led Alabama, 2-0, in the fourth inning.

The result: On a 2-2 count, Lunceford fully extended her arms to the outside part of the plate for an opposite-field grand slam. Her Crimson Tide teammates bolted to home plate, dancing in celebration. Alabama eventually won, 6-2, eliminating Arizona State.

Lunceford hit the first grand slam in WCWS history since 1984, when UCLA's Jennifer Simm hit the first grand slam in WCWS history.

Niki Williams, Washington (8) vs. Georgia (9), (9 inn.) on May 31, 2009

The situation: Niki Williams was raking that day in May. The freshman hit a three-run homer in the second inning to give Washington a 3-0 lead over Georgia. But in the fifth inning, the Huskies were down 8-3 when Williams came up to bat in the fifth inning.

The result: Williams pulled an up-and-away pitch past the left field wall, tying the game at 8 and setting an NCAA WCWS record with seven RBI in a game. Her heroics were not enough, however, as the Bulldogs won 9-8 in the ninth to avoid elimination. 

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Up until May, 31, 2009, Williams had not hit a home run since Feb. 27.

Ali Gardiner, Florida (6) vs. Alabama (5) on May 31, 2009

Florida Athletics Ali Gardiner of Florida softball grand slam

The situation: The Gators are one win away from clinching the WCWS championship berth, down three runs in the 7th. The bases are loaded with two outs and Ali Gardiner up to bat.

The result: Gardiner strokes the 2-1 pitch toward the left field wall. It keeps drifting back and back, leaving the yard. The Gators walk-off into their first-ever WCWS championship series. Gardiner's grand slam was her first hit of the WCWS.

Danielle Lawrie, Washington (9) vs. Georgia (3) on May 31, 2009

Shane Bevel | NCAA Photos Danielle Lawrie of Washington softballDanielle Lawrie starred as an All-American pitcher and hitter at Washington.

The situation: The 2009 WCWS ended the grand slam drought that went back to 1984. Suddenly, it seemed like it was one grand slam after another. There were four in only two days in 2009, including three on May 31. Lawrie had the last, as she came up to bat with the bases loaded in the first inning of a scoreless game.

The result: Reaching over the plate, Lawrie sent the pitch past the right field wall for much needed run support. The Huskies won 9-3 and advanced to the championship series.

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2009 was a record breaking season for the WCWS. Teams set a new WCWS home run record with 24, though the figure wouldn't last long — 2010 saw 36 home runs. Of the 24 home runs hit in 2009, four were grand slams, all of which came in a 24-hour span. As mentioned earlier, only one grand slam had been hit in the previous 28-year history of the Women's College World Series.

Erinn Webb, Tennessee (7) vs. Georgia (5) on June 4, 2010

The situation: Erinn Webb was a .213 hitter during the 2010 regular season. But then she came up with the bases loaded and nobody out in the third inning of the 2010 WCWS.

The result: Webb powered a 2-0 pitch to deep-right center to put the Lady Volunteers ahead 6-0. Tennessee eventually beat Georgia, 7-5.

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Andrea Harrison, UCLA (15) vs. Arizona (9) on June 8, 2010

Stephen Pingry | NCAA Photos Andrea Harrison of UCLA softball grand slam

The situation: Not often do conference foes face off in the championship. After defeating Arizona 6-5 in Game 1 of the championship series, UCLA got off to a fast start in Game 2, up 2-0 after the first. Andrea Harrison came up in the second inning with the bases loaded and one out.

The result: Harrison sent the 1-1 pitch to deep centerfield, catapulting the Bruins to a 6-0 lead and eventual 15-9 victory over Arizona for the 2010 national championship. Harrison's grand slam was the first grand slam in a WCWS championship game/finals contest.

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After the game, Harrison spoke to the media about her grand slam and winning the national championship: "It's the best feeling in the world. This is what I signed up for. This is the reason why I committed to UCLA. It's the reason why I put a lot of things off and sacrificed a lot of things."

Brittany Schutte, Florida (16) vs. Alabama (2) on June 5, 2011

Florida Athletics Brittany Schutte of Florida softball

The situation: The Gators have a way of exposing pitchers in the WCWS. This was Schutte's second at-bat of the first inning. Bases were loaded with 2 outs; Florida had scored 7 runs already.

The result: Schutte only needed to see one pitch for her 21st home run of the season, sending it to dead center. Even the center field camera got a whiff of the ball's heat. Florida went into the second inning leading 11-0 on five hits. The Gators ultimately won the game 16-2 in five innings, eluding elimination and forcing the decisive Game 2 in the semifinals that night.

Chelsea Herndon, Florida (11) vs. Baylor (0) on May 29, 2014

Florida Athletics Chelsea Herndon of Florida softball grand slam

The situation: Chelsea Herdon came on to pinch hit with the bases loaded in the fifth inning. Florida was up 7-0, needing just one more run to qualify for the mercy rule. 

The result: The 1-2 pitch came down the middle of the strike zone and Herndon did not miss it. Her fly ball kept drifting back and back and back until it fell just past the left-center wall. Her pinch-hit grand slam walked off the Gators, straight into the second round.

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On top of it all, Herndon went yard on her former high school teammate Heather Stearns.

Lauren Sweet, Michigan (5) vs. Alabama (0) on May 28, 2015

Michigan Athletics Lauren Sweet of Michigan softball grand slam

The situation: Up 1-0 on Alabama in the opening round, Lauren Sweet came to bat with the bases loaded and no outs in the fourth inning. 

The result: With the count full, Sweet sent the eighth pitch of the at-bat over the right field wall. Down and in, the pitch was right in Sweet's sweet spot. She crossed first base screaming with a subtle first pump. 

Mysha Sataraka, UCLA (4) vs. Florida St. (8) on June 4, 2016

UCLA Athletics Mysha Sutaraka of UCLA softball grand slam

The situation: The day had just begun in Oklahoma City. Meghan King was in the circle for the Seminoles with the bases loaded and no one out in the first inning. UCLA's Mysha Sataraka forced a full count.

The result: Next pitch was up and Sataraka took King's mistake and crushed it, launching it over center field. Sataraka's patience was rewarded as she jogged to home plate where her entire team congratulated her. The 'Noles would eventually rally to take the game and eliminate the Bruins from championship contention. Sataraka's grand slam is one of only two WCWS grand slams featured in a losing effort; Niki Williams' slam in 2009 is the other.

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Emily Carosone, Auburn (11) vs. Oklahoma (7) on June 7, 2016

Auburn Athletics Emily Carosone of Auburn softball grand slam

The situation: Bases loaded, scored tied at 7 in extra innings. It's Game 2 of the WCWS finals. Emily Carosone and her Auburn Tigers are one loss away from seeing Oklahoma crowned national champions.

The result: First pitch is middle away and Carosone scorches it over the right-center wall. She rounds third base pointing to the Auburn fans above the visitor's dugout and touches home plate as her teammates swarm. Auburn was down 7-0 in the second inning before completing the shocking rally

The Tigers lived to see the final day of the 2016 season.

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Division I
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May 30 - June 6/7, 2024
USA Softball Hall of Fame Stadium | Oklahoma City, OK

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