May 24, 2013
COLUMBIA, Mo. - More great pitching, stellar defense and clutch hitting helped the No. 11 Huskies clinch the first spot to the WCWS in 2013 with a 1-0 win over No. 6 Missouri (38-14) on Friday night in Columbia, Mo.
Washington (43-15) will return to Oklahoma City for the first time since 2010 and the 11th time in school history. The Huskies will face the winner of the Eugene Super Regional featuring Oregon and Nebraska on Thursday at ASA Hall of Fame Stadium.
Junior Bryana Walker (La Quinta, Calif.) had a no-hitter going until the sixth. Her hitless streak was 12.2 innings going back to game one of Regionals in Seattle vs. Portland State. She threw a no-hitter vs. Hawai'i in the Regional Championship last weekend. Walker earned the win (19-7) after allowing just two hits in 5.0 innings.
In relief, junior Kaitlin Inglesby (Portland, Ore.) earned the save, her second of the year, pitching two perfect innings.
The first inning pretty much told the whole story of the game. With the UW as the designated home, Missouri was set to make a statement in the top of the first.
With two outs and one on, Mackenzie Sykes drilled a ball to deep center but sophomore Kylee Lahners (Laguna Hills, Calif.) robbed the home run over the fence to keep the Tigers off the board.
The Huskies took that momentum and in their first at bat of the game. Junior Victoria Hayward (Mountain View, Calif.) hit a solo home run to right field and that would stand for the game-winner.
Each team had just two hits in the game, Hayward with both for the Huskies. The Tigers drew four walks and had a runner at third in the sixth after breaking up the no-hitter but three groundouts to the left side of the infield ended the threat.
Washington looked to extend its lead in the sixth after Hayward walked on four pitches. A sac bunt by Hooch Fagaly (Chino, Calif.) moved her to second and she reached third on an error at Inglesby's at bat. Hayward went home on a ground out but was called out at the plate.
More information on the WCWS will be provided on www.gohuskies.com throughout the week.