Several conferences are well represented in the 2019 WCWS. The Pac-12 leads with three teams (UCLA, Washington and Arizona). The SEC has two teams (Alabama and Florida). The Big 12 also has two teams (Oklahoma and Oklahoma State). And the Big Ten has one team (Minnesota).
Below are the opening games of the double defeat format round.
Oklahoma vs. Alabama
On Thursday the Crimson Tide faces a tough task when they play Oklahoma in their WCWS game draw. Alabama likes the long ball, leading the SEC with 81. Leading the way are Bailey Hemphill (24) and Kaylee Tow. They also have a three pronged pitching attack that includes, Krystal Goodman, Montana Fouts and Sarah Cornell. But Oklahoma has fire power of their own in the form of players, Jocelyn Alo, Falepolima Aviu and Sydney Romero. While in the circle Giselle “G” Juarez has been a shutdown type pitcher all season. Although Alabama has been the underdog all year and shutting up their critics with their performance on the field I don’t see how they are gonna be able to overcome all of Oklahoma’s talent and at the level the Sooners are performing at in this point of the season. I look for Oklahoma to get the win.
Florida vs. Oklahoma State
There is no doubt in my mind that Samantha Show is why Oklahoma State is in the WCWS this year. She has brought an energy to the team and quickly jumped in to a leadership role both in the circle and batter’s box. She has a spark that gets the team going no matter the situation. But now they have to face Florida and Kelly Barnhill. With Barnhill in the circle it doesn’t take much offense to win the game and the Gators have some offensive firepower in the form of Amanda Lorenz and Kendyl Lindaman. If it’s a low scoring game Florida should get the win but if it turns in to a high scoring shootout look for the Cowgirls to come out on top.
Washington vs. Arizona
This should be a good match up. The two teams met three times in the beginning of May in Pac-12 play with Arizona losing all three of those games. Washington’s senior Taran Alvelo and sophomore Gabbie Plain are a strong pitching duo while Arizona has junior ace Taylor McQuillin and lots of big bats that can score runs fast. I’m picking Washington to pull it out in a close one.
UCLA vs. Minnesota
I don’t know how anyone is gonna stop UCLA but Minnesota should give them a good game. Both teams feature talented pitching staffs. Minnesota surprised me winning over LSU to make it this far but I think this is UCLA’s year and they should get the win.