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Alabama Shuts Down OU To Win National Championship

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Alabama pitcher Jackie Traina (Center) hugs her teammates after game two of the WCWS finals. (AP Photo) Alabama pitcher Jackie Traina (Center) hugs her teammates after game two of the WCWS finals. (AP Photo)
OKLAHOMA CITY -

Softball fans had to wait it out from Wednesday evening into the wee hours of the morning to learn who would win this year's NCAA Women's College World Series.

After numerous rain delays, the Alabama Crimson Tide earned its first NCAA National Championship with a 5-4 win over the Sooners..

Heavy and slow moving rain delayed the game nearly three hours but the teams eventually returned to the dampened field and got things started just before 10 p.m.

OU's Keilani Ricketts got the scoring started in the second with a solo home run down the right field line giving the Sooners an early 1-0 advantage.

In the third, with one out and Brianna Turang on second, Lauren Chamberlain continued her hot hitting streak with a long ball to left field to plate two runs and make it 3-0.

By the fourth the rain was falling again resulting in another rain delay, but this time it was a short one of only about 15 minutes. Somewhere in that rain delay though, Alabama came up with just what it needed to finish the game.

Because of the damp conditions, OU pitcher Keilani Ricketts struggled to control her pitches which Alabama took advantage of.

Kaila Hunt's leadoff single began the fourth for Alabama. She then advanced to second on a wild pitch and two batters later Hunt moved to third off yet another Ricketts passed ball. Kendall Dawson drew a walk and on the third wild pitch of the inning advanced to second as Hunt trotted home to cut the lead to 3-1. Amanda Locke stepped to the plate and connected on a single that turned into a double when OU committed an error on the throw to first which allowed Dawson to make it home for a 3-2 score.

Alabama wasn't done there. Courtney Conley knocked a double to center scoring Locke and one batter later scored when another throwing error by the Sooner moved Jazlyn Lunceford to second. OU finally got Kayla Braud to groundout to end the threat, but the Crimson Tide did its damage with the last run to go ahead of OU 4-3.

In the fifth, Alabama star pitcher Jackie Traina singled to right to score Fenton from second making it 5-3.

The Sooners tried for another comeback like it made in game two when Chamberlain sent another long ball over the fence, this time in right center to make it 5-4, but that would be as close as the Sooners would get.

Oklahoma (54-10) had won 12 straight games, including the opening game of the championship series, before losing two in a row.

Ricketts finished with seven strikeouts in her six innings in the circle, but allowed seven hits, five runs and three earned runs on the night.

Alabama finishes the season at 60-8 with Traina going all seven innings allowing five hits and for runs while striking out six.

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