Auburn gets first-ever WCWS win
OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) Auburn made the kind of history Saturday it hired coach Clint Myers for.
Carlee Wallace and Haley Fagan each had two hits to help the Tigers beat Tennessee 4-2 for the program's first win in the Women's College World Series.
Myers, who led Arizona State to national championships in 2008 and 2011, took over Auburn's program in 2014 and took it to its first World Series his second year. He immediately raised expectations.
''We've said that since day one - this program is going to win,'' Myers said. ''And these ladies are setting a legacy for future Auburn teams, and they're setting it in the right way.''
There's not much time to celebrate. The Tigers (55-10) play UCLA on Saturday night in an elimination game.
Tennessee (47-17), which also lost to Auburn in the SEC Championship game, was eliminated.
Wallace's two-run double highlighted a four-run third inning for Auburn.
The tying run came to the plate for Tennessee with one out in the seventh inning, but Auburn reliever Rachael Walters struck out the final two batters for the save. She struck out five in 2 1-3 innings of hitless relief.
''I mean, Rachael just attacked,'' Myers said. ''I mean, here it is, and it was good to see.''
Walters stepped in for starter Lexi Davis, who gave up just two runs in 4 2-3 innings. Walters has adjusted well to her role as a reliever.
''I think I'm comfortable coming in as a closer and kind of helping us out of tough situations now, especially in the end of the season,'' she said. ''That's what I like to do. That's what I'm good at. And I think my teammates see that as well.''
Tennessee missed several opportunities and had multiple baserunning mistakes. The Lady Vols loaded the bases in the bottom of the second inning, but failed to score. In all, Tennessee left nine runners on base in the game.
''That happens when you play aggressive,'' Tennessee co-coach Ralph Weekly said. ''And we challenged our kids to play aggressive. There was nothing dumb about it. We just ran ourselves out of it.''
Tennessee's scoring potential left Myers feeling a bit uneasy.
''They are capable of putting crooked numbers on the board anytime,'' Myers said. ''They're a very, very good team. They can swing it.''
Weekly said he's proud of the team and the program for getting to the World Series.
''We've been a softball program for 20 years, and seven of those have ended in Oklahoma City,'' he said. ''There's not many programs that can say that.''