NCAA SOFTBALL

ASU, Cal advance to semifinals

2012-06-03T00:00:00Z ASU, Cal advance to semifinalsThe Associated Press The Associated Press
June 03, 2012 12:00 am  • 

OKLAHOMA CITY - Defending champion Arizona State and California advanced through the losers bracket Saturday to reach the semifinals at the Women's College World Series.

Arizona State will face Oklahoma today at 10 a.m. Oklahoma has not lost at this WCWS, so if the Sun Devils win, a second game would be played.

Similarly, Cal must beat Alabama twice to advance to the best-of-three championship finals.

Arizona State staved off elimination with a 6-0 win over LSU on Saturday night. The top-ranked Bears extended their season with a 6-3 win over Oregon.

Alix Johnson was a big part of two big Arizona State innings. In the third, she broke a scoreless tie with a three-run home run on the first pitch from LSU starter Rachele Fico.

In the fifth, Johnson singled, stole second and scored along with Haley Steele and Amber Freeman with the help of a single from Sam Parlich.

ASU starter Hillary Bach was called for five illegal pitches for lifting her pivot foot but settled down to finish the four-hitter.

Cal jumped out to a quick lead when second baseman Jace Williams crushed a three-run home run on a 2-2 Jessica Moore offering in the first.

The Bears scored two in the second and another in the fourth when catcher Victoria Jones homered.

Cal pitcher Jolene Henderson improved to 38-3, tossing a complete game.

"My team has always been there for me," Henderson said after the win. "Even when they're not hitting, they're behind me defensively."

Oregon (45-18) scored a run in the third on a Samantha Pappas home run. The Ducks added two more in the sixth thanks to freshman Sara Goodrum's double.

In the first game of the day, LSU's A.J. Andrews scored on an infield fly in the sixth inning to lead the Tigers to a 1-0 win over South Florida.

Hit by a pitch to start the sixth, Andrews moved to third after a long fly ball from Ashley Langoni bounced off center fielder Janine Richardson's glove at the warning track.

Allison Falcon lofted a fly ball two batters later forcing USF shortstop Kourtney Salvarola to the edge of the outfield grass. Andrews tagged from third and thrust her left hand in to grab a corner of the plate on a wide slide around USF catcher Laura Fountain.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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