Oklahoma State just couldn’t get it done with its season on the line on Sunday.
OSU managed only four hits off right-handed pitcher Ashley Rogers as the 4-seeded Tennessee Volunteers took the 3-1 win over the 6-seeded Cowgirls at Hall of Fame Stadium in Oklahoma City.
With the loss, OSU finishes the season at 47-16, while Tennessee improves to 51-9.
Rodgers and the Volunteer defense made sure Oklahoma State got no chances on Sunday. She gave up one run on four hits with four strikeouts in her complete-game performance.
The Cowgirl pitching staff also did their part to keep Kenny Gajewski and his crew in the game. Kelly Maxwell and Lexi Kilfoyl combined gave up three hits on the night, and recorded five strikeouts.
But with the pitching and defense showing up, Oklahoma State’s offense didn’t show up at all. The Cowgirls left five people on base, including recording only one hit in the last three innings.
Maxwell got the start in the circle and kept the Volunteers under control. She gave up two runs on three hits with two walks and three strikeouts
The game was scoreless through two innings, but Tennessee changed that narrative in the third inning.
Zaida Puni got the first run across home plate in the third, shooting a one-out double into right field, scoring Kiki Milloy and giving the Volunteers the 1-0 lead.
Rylie West added to the lead later in the inning, hitting an RBI-single past Kiley Naomi and Megan Bloodworth, scoring pinch runner Brylee Mesusan and pushing the lead to 2-0.
Micaela Wark got things going for the Cowgirls in the fourth inning as she hit a single into left field. Tallen Edwards kept it going, hitting a two-out shot to the left field wall. Wark tried to go from first to home on the hit from Wynne, but she got a little too greedy as she was gunned down at home by right fielder Katie Taylor, ending any opportunity for OSU to cut into the lead.
A OSU mistake led to a run for Tennessee in the fifth inning as Taylor Tuck tried to throw out West at second, but the ball was thrown off target, allowing Puni to score from third and increase the lead to 3-0.
Wynne brought a spark to the Cowgirl offense in the sixth inning as she launched a ball over the left field wall, giving OSU life and cutting the lead to 3-1.
But that was all Oklahoma State could muster up as Rodgers shut them down in the seventh inning, giving Tennessee the hard fought victory.
The Volunteers have advanced to the semifinals of the Women’s College World Series, and will take on Florida State on Monday at 6 p.m. in Oklahoma City.