By Stacey Kilpatrick
Top-seeded Arizona State University [60-6] won its second Women’s College World Series National Championship on Tuesday, thanks to freshman pitcher Dallas Escobedo, who helped the Sun Devils sweep the No. 4 University of Florida on Monday and Tuesday.
“We started January 10th and here we are,” said Arizona State coach Clint Meyers in a postgame press conference. “It’s very special. We got eight seniors that I truly love. They have just endured so much and been through so many different things … I’m so proud of them and am so excited for them and I tell you what, I really don’t know what to say, it’s just phenomenal.”
Arizona State, who previously won the championship in 2008, also earned the Pac-10 its 23rd of 29 championships.
“Ultimately that was the better team that won today,” said Florida coach Tim Walton. “We had a great season. We’ve come a long way in our sport.”
Arizona State played fantastic on both Monday and Tuesday, as juniors Annie Lockwood and Katelyn Boyd, as well as seniors Krista Donnenwirth and Kaylyn Castillo helped the offense produce runs.
Florida freshman pitcher Hannah Rogers and senior Stephanie Brombacher struggled against ASU, as the two combined for 13 innings, 22 hits, 21 runs, 20 errors, 10 walks, but managed to strikeout seven batters.
The Gators ended the season with a NCAA record 124 home runs, thanks to sophomore Brittany Schutte and senior Megan Bush. Bush led the squad with 80 RBI’s and Michelle Moultrie ended the season with a [.443] batting average and [.513] on-base percentage.
“No one wants to end their career on a loss,” added Brombacher. “It’s tough to swallow. (But I’m) proud of my teammates, especially Hannah, picking me up when I was struggling,”
“We’ve only lost 33 games in four years,” Walton said. “One heck of a program, one heck of a class. Only thing they didn’t win was [the] big one.
Monday and Tuesday’s games also marked the fourth time Florida [56-13] made an appearance in finals.