Florida will play for national title after defeating Washington

Florida’s Amanda Lorenz (18), Justine McLean (52) and Nicole DeWitt (23) celebrate a score in the second inning Sunday during a Women’s College World Series semifinal against Washington in Oklahoma City. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman via AP]

OKLAHOMA CITY — Top-seeded Florida followed the same script Sunday it brought to ASA Hall of Fame Stadium to advance to the championship series – unhittable pitching and plenty of offense in its 5-2 semifinal win over Washington.

At ASA Hall of Fame Stadium
Oklahoma City
Monday: Florida vs. Oklahoma, 7 p.m., ESPN
Tuesday: Florida vs. Oklahoma, 8 p.m., ESPN
x-Wednesday: UF vs. OU, 8 p.m.
x-If necessary

Senior pitcher Delanie Gourley (22-4), making her first career start in a WCWS game, struck out 10 against just one walk and two hits. The two runs were unearned. Kayli Kvistad drove in three runs to give Gourley enough support.

“It’s up to the players,” UF coach Tim Walton said. “Our coaching staff does a really good job of preparing and putting together a plan, but the players have to execute it. They have to buy into it, and they have to be able to control their heartbeat on this stage.

“I’ve always said it, that this is a big deal playing on this stage, and the team that plays the most normal has got a chance to win, and I think we’ve been able to do that. I think our players have been able to just buy into themselves and be confident, and again, some people peak in the beginning of the season, some people peak in the middle of the season, and some teams never peak, and if your team can peak at the right time and get some confidence towards the end, you’ve got a chance, and now we’ve got our team in position to have a chance.”

Florida (58-8) will play for the national championship against defending national champion Oklahoma (59-9), a 4-2 winner over Oregon (54-8) in the other semifinal. The best-of-three championship series starts at 7 p.m. Monday (ESPN). UF is playing for its third national championship in four seasons.
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