Clint Myers (above) congratulates Kasey Cooper after her two-run homer to tie Tuesday night's game.
Oklahoma City--The Auburn softball Tigers hope to keep their momentum from a thrilling Tuesday night victory and make school history on Wednesday evening as they take on the Oklahoma Sooners in the final game of the College World Series.
The Tigers rallied from seven runs down on Tuesday night to win 11-7 in eight innings and tie the series at one game apiece.
Coach Clint Myers has seen his Auburn team score the winning run in the seventh inning or extra innings nine times this season, including World Series wins vs. Georgia and Florida State prior to Tuesday night’s walk-off win.
In four of Auburn’s six wins, including last year’s trip to the semi-finals round of the World Series, the Tigers have scored the winning run in the seventh inning or extra innings.
Asked what he told his team after they fell way behind in the second inning in Tuesday’s night game the Tigers had to win to set up Wednesday’s finale, Myers said, “It was 7-0 and we have only hit once.
“Basically, we just we went out there in the circle and we had some words of encouragement, and we just said basically there is so much of this game left.
“We can score bunches, but we have got to play defense. We have got to get the people in the circle back trusting that we are going to make plays, and we know what we are doing, and we have got to communicate the little things.
“The little things go a long way, and they just give pitchers so much confidence when they are out there making the plays behind them,” Auburn’s third-year head coach added.
“It wasn't difficult to go out there and just tell them to be Auburn and be proud, because, I mean, we have had a hell of a season, and we have got one more game to play.”
Emily Carosone provided the home run that provided a walk-off win in game two of the series.
That one more game is scheduled for a 6 p.m. CDT start with TV coverage on ESPN.
Auburn scored the final 11 runs of the Tuesday night game to improve its average to 7.0 runs per contest in five World Series outings.
"We are confident in our offensive ability to come back no matter what.," said Kasey Cooper, the SEC Player of the Year. "We have always been known for never quitting and having that relentless attitude.
"When we came in and we said, 'Hey, let's play Auburn softball. We're going to get a few runs at a time and we're going to play great defense because we can do this, and we didn't want it to be over. We knew that we are a championship team, and we wanted to prove it, not only to everyone else but to ourselves."
Auburn, the SEC Tournament champion, will look to improve its 58-11 record and win its first-ever national championship in softball. Oklahoma, the Big 12 champion which had won 31 consecutive games prior to Tuesday night, is 56-8. The Sooners are looking to win their third national title in softball.
The Sooners are expected to pitcher their All-American Paige Parker, the winner of game one in a 3-2 decision vs. the Tigers. She warmed up on Tuesday night, but did not enter the game.
“I don't expect anyone else but Parker,” said Auburn All-American Emily Carosone, who hit the walk-off grandslam homer in the eighth inning on Tuesday night.
“We are excited,” Carosone added. “Like we said (Monday), we were on her that last inning, and I don't think it will take us that long to get on them. I think what it is going to come down to is the defense and taking away the bunts that they were getting on, but I am excited.”