UCLA pounds Oregon, 7-1, in softball College World Series in opener

OKLAHOMA CITY -- Stephanie LaRosa and Gabrielle Maurice hit solo home runs for UCLA in the second inning and Ally Carda pitched the Bruins to a 7-1 victory over Oregon on Thursday night in the first round of the softball College World Series.

After the rain-delayed victory over the Ducks, the seventh-seeded Bruins will face Michigan on Friday night in a winner's bracket game of the double-elimination tournament.

UCLA (51-10) added five runs in the sixth inning to make things more comfortable for Carda, who escaped a bases-loaded situation in the fourth inning.

Carda, who went 31-6 during the regular season, easily won her showdown with Oregon's Cheridan Hawkins in the battle of first-team All-Americans. Hawkins, who fell to 30-4, gave up seven earned runs and eight hits in 52/3 innings.

Mysha Sataraka had a bloop, two-run double in the sixth, and Kylee Perez and Gracie Goulder added run-scoring hits.

Oregon (51-7) will face Alabama in an elimination game Saturday. The Ducks had defeated UCLA in two of three meetings during the regular season.

Other games

Lauren Sweet hit a grand slam and Megan Betsa threw a four-hitter to help Michigan beat Alabama, 5-0. Betsa struck out six for the third-seeded Wolverines (57-6). Kelly Christner hit a solo home run in the bottom of the first inning, and Sweet connected off Alexis Osorio in the fourth. The Wolverines had only four hits, but they left just two on base. "My adjustment was to go up there and use my timing swing and really see a lot of pitches," Sweet said of her grand slam. "I think that even though I got down in the count, I was able to come back and really see the ball and really see it down, so my game plan worked out."

Senior Lauren Haeger had two hits and gave up only one in a complete-game victory as defending champion Florida (56-6) defeated Tennessee, 7-2. Haeger, the only player in NCAA history to have more than 60 homers and 60 wins in a college career, opened the scoring with a solo home run to left field.

Bianka Bell and Kellsi Kloss hit home runs to help Louisiana State defeat Auburn, 6-1. LSU scored four runs in the third inning, highlighted by Kloss' two-run shot. Emily Griggs had three hits and Constance Quinn added two for fifth-seeded LSU (51-12).

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