NORMAN, Okla. – The 16th-seeded Texas A&M softball team’s (42-18) season came to an end in the NCAA Super Regional as No. 1 seed Oklahoma (52-4) took an 8-0 five-inning win to advance to the Women’s College World Series for the eighth time in history.
This marks the fifth Super Regional appearance for the Aggies and the 24th trip to the NCAA Tournament, including 12 straight under Head Coach Jo Evans. A&M also picked up its eighth 40-win season with Evans at the helm in 2013. The Aggies began the season with the program’s best start at 19-0.
A&M put up three hits on the Sooners in game two of the Super Regional, and drew one hit-by-pitch, but three runners were left on base and the Aggies were unable to send a run across the plate.
An early solo home run over right-centerfield by OU’s Shelby Pendley pushed the Sooners out to a 1-0 lead in the top of the first.
A&M got two aboard in the bottom of the first on a zinger down the left-field line by junior Jenna Stark and a single through the left side by junior Emily Albus. Both runners were stranded after two straight strikeouts.
Junior Cassie Tysarczyk reached in the bottom of the second when she placed a base hit in the perfect gap in centerfield, but a double play ended the inning.
OU stretched its lead to 4-0 in the top of the third when Pendley went yard again, plating three runs on the play.
In the top of the fourth, the Sooners scored four runs with two outs for the 8-0 lead after loading the bases on a single, a walk and a hit-by-pitch. OU pitcher Keilani Ricketts hit a two-RBI double and tried to score on an RBI single to right, but Tysarczyk zipped a ball home from right and senior Meagan May applied the tag to end the inning.
Sophomore Lauren Ainsley entered the circle in the top of the fourth to finish the game for the Aggies and forced the Sooners through a three-up, three-down top-of-the-fifth to give A&M a chance to rally.
In the final half-inning, Dumezich took a pitch to the body with two outs to reach first, but Ricketts fanned the final batter to end the Aggies’ 2013 season at the Super Regional level.
Dumezich (27-10) struck out three batters and allowed eight earned runs on six hits through 3 2/3 innings of work in the circle. Ricketts (31-1) tossed seven strikeouts and gave up three hits in the five-inning shutout.
Three Aggie seniors ended their collegiate careers in Norman today – May, Dumezich and Sydney Shannon left their cleats on home plate after the game, and left their legacy on the Aggie softball team. Dumezich is a two-time All-American and holds the A&M record for games played at 230 and May, a 2010 All-American, owns the Aggie career records for home runs (69) and RBI (189) and the single-season record for home runs (24). Shannon graduated earlier this month.
To learn more about Texas A&M softball, log on to AggieAthletics.com and follow @AggieSoftball on Twitter.