Who will punch their ticket to the WCWS national championship series?
The GIST: After a wild weekend of mercy-rule shutouts and tight pitchers’ duels, the aforementioned Crimson Tide, No. 6 Oklahoma State, No. 7 Washington, and No. 15 Utah all saw their WCWS dreams dashed. That leaves four surviving teams fighting for a spot in the championship series today.
- And today’s semifinals are the No. 1 Oklahoma Sooners’ and No. 3 Florida State Seminoles’ to lose. Neither team has fallen in OKC, so their one-loss opponents must beat them twice to advance, while the Sooners and ’Noles are through with a single dub. Game on.
No. 1 Oklahoma Sooners (58-1) vs. No. 9 Stanford Cardinal (47-14), 12 p.m. ET (ESPN): Two-time defending champs Oklahoma have been unsurprisingly dominant, shutting out Stanford on Thursday before run-ruling Tennessee on Saturday. But the Cardinal will have another shot at the Sooners after their pitching duo of NiJaree Canady and Alana Vawter combined to blank Alabama and Washington this weekend.
- Like Thursday’s game, this will be a pitchers’ battle. With freshman phenom Canady in the circle, the Cardinal nearly kept the Sooners at bay in their WCWS opener. Can they bring enough heat to top Oklahoma twice today? Well…anything’s possible.
No. 3 Florida State Seminoles (57-9) vs. No. 4 Tennessee Volunteers (51-9), 7 p.m. ET (ESPN): Tennessee’s on a rollercoaster, demolishing Bama Thursday before throwing a head-scratching bullpen game that saw them mercy-ruled by Oklahoma Saturday. But they’re back on the upswing: Last night’s 3–1 dub, which featured 136 pitches from All-American Ashley Rogers, booked Rocky Top’s first semi in 10 years.