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Preview and Game Thread - Women’s College World Series - Baylor vs Oklahoma

Baylor softball takes on Oklahoma in the late game on opening day of the 2017 Women’s College World Series.

NCAA Football: West Virginia at Baylor Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

The Baylor Lady Bears (46-12) begin double elimination bracket play with the Oklahoma Sooners tonight at 8:30 p.m. CT in the Women’s College World Series at ASA Hall of Fame Stadium in Oklahoma City, Okla. Baylor’s contest with the Sooners will be nationally televised on ESPN2, while fans can also listen online or tune in to ESPN Central Texas to hear the radio call from Dan Ingham.

Baylor enters the eight-team field as the largest upset coming out of the Super Regional round, with the Lady Bears knocking off No. 2 Arizona in three games at the Tucson Super Regional to become the first No. 15 seed to advance to the WCWS since Tennessee upset No. 2 Michigan in 2010.

BU was one of four lower seeds to upset a higher-seeded opponent, joined by No. 9 Texas A&M, No. 10 Oklahoma, and No. 13 LSU. The top-8 seeds who advanced out of the Supers round were No. 1 Florida, No. 3 Oregon, No. 5 UCLA, and No. 6 Washington. Baylor has a 3-2 mark against the tournament field in 2017, notching wins over Oklahoma, UCLA, and Washington.

Baylor’s bracket (bracket 2) for double elimination play pairs Baylor and Oklahoma, and, Washington and Oregon. Bracket 1 games saw Florida win over aTm (8-0) in game 1, and, LSU over UCLA (2-1). See NCAA Interactive Bracket. Game 3 featuring Washington and Oregon begins at 6:00 p.m. CT on ESPN2.

The Sooners have ruled the Big 12 with six straight conference championships, and they’ve been a major player on the national scene with NCAA championships in 2000, 2013 and 2016.

The Lady Bears will face the Sooners in their own backyard on the opening day of the Women’s College World Series at 8:30 p.m. Thursday at ASA Hall of Fame Stadium in Oklahoma City.

“They’re on a stage they’re very comfortable with and it will be like a home game for them,” said Baylor coach Glenn Moore. “We know what we’re up against. But we just played a game with about 3,000 fans wearing Arizona colors. So it’s not anything that’s going to freak us out. We’ll be ready for them.” Continue reading WacoTrib game preview . . .

Friudenberg, Goose Packing Punch for Lady Bears - Baylor Official Athletic Site
Baylor junior Shelby Friudenberg was shown the ultimate sign of respect as a hitter at last weekend's Tucson Super Regional when she was intentionally walked twice by second-seeded Arizona.

Baylor softball brings ‘no quit’ mindset to College World Series | The Baylor Lariat, Baylor head coach Glenn Moore leads Baylor into a World Series field where five of the eight schools are the top national seeds, including No. 1 Florida, No. 3 Oregon, No. 5 UCLA, No. 6 Washington, No. 9 Texas A&M, No. 10 Oklahoma and No. 13 LSU.

Visibly missing from the aforementioned field is No. 2 Arizona, who Baylor disposed of in three games over the weekend in the Tucson, Ariz. Super Regionals. The series showcased the 1-2 punch in the circle of senior Kelsee Selman, who earned the win in game two and the save in game three, and sophomore Gia Rodoni, who won game three.

It also highlighted the power and offensive capabilities of the Shelby’s, junior first baseman Shelby Friudenberg and freshman utility player Shelby “Goose” McGlaun, both of whom had key home runs in helping Baylor clinch a spot in the World Series.

These two offensive forces will be making their first trip to the mecca of college softball, something that gives both players and coaches a real gift in life.

“As a coach, there is no great gift you can give your players than to take them to the greatest place in college softball. This is something that they’ll be able to talk about for the rest of their lives,” Moore said. “For the seniors, it’s great for them to go back. For the first-timers, it’s great as well, memories will be made on the biggest stage of college softball.”

However, Moore has in his arsenal two players who were on his 2014 Baylor squad that punched its way to Oklahoma City, in senior third baseman Lindsey Cargill and senior second baseman Ari Hawkins.

Despite the previous experience, Moore believes this team’s character is different from those in past seasons and that this is what makes this team so special.

Women's College World Series 2017: Bracket, schedule, live scores, and highlights -, Eight teams remain in the race to a national championship.