Softball: No. 1 Bears eliminated by Tide

Cal softball coach Diane Ninemire has said her 2012 Golden Bears are the most talented team she’s coached in 25 years. She also said it remained to be seen whether they could match the 2002 squad, which won the school’s only NCAA championship in the sport.

The top-seeded Bears (58-7) came up short of that goal Sunday, losing 5-2 to No. 2 seed Alabama (58-7) in an elimination game at the College World Series.

Cal’s dream season is over, three wins shy of their goal.

The Crimson Tide hit three home runs off Jolene Henderson (38-4), who was the best pitcher in the Pac-12 all season but was not at her best in Oklahoma City.

Freshman Danielle Henderson hit a two-run homer for the Bears — her 16th — but Cal got just one other hit.

In fact, the Bears’ offense failed to do its part in both CWS defeats, totaling four hits against Oklahoma and Alabama. The Bears averaged 3.25 runs in four CWS games, less than half its season output.

Senior slugger Valerie Arioto, the Pac-12 Player of the Year, drew seven walks at the Series, but otherwise was 0 for 7 at the plate.

Meanwhile, No. 4 seed Oklahoma (53-8) posted a 5-3 win over No. 3 Arizona State, eliminating the Sun Devils and denying the Pac-12 a spot in the championship series for the first time after 26 years.

 — RUGBY: The Bears won the bronze medal at the Collegiate Rugby Championship 7s tournament in Philadelphia. Cal beat Life University 26-7 at PPL Park in the third-place game after losing 21-19 to Dartmouth in the semifinals. The Bears opened the day with a 54-5 win over Texas in the quarterfinals.

The Bears finished the tournament with a 5-1 record and a plus-130 scoring margin.

Jeff Faraudo

  • MoreNCsarecoming

    How did the men’s 7’s rugby do? I hope they fared better than the softball team.

  • David Swartz

    USC baseball: lost 15 of its final 16 games
    USC men’s basketball: lost 19 of its final 20 games
    USC softball: doesn’t exist

    Lose On!

  • southseasbear

    Men’s Golf also lost to Alabama in the semifinals, 3-2.

  • MoreNCsarecoming

    USC football has beaten UCB 8 out of the past 9 games.

  • Eric

    Great season Cal softball!

  • MoreSanctionsComing

    Moren, the troll… so bored and lonely in the football off-season that she seeks out other Cal sports to bash.

    How empty poor Amy’s life must be. No better place to spend her time than a blog where she’s unwelcome by every other blog participant. Sad.

  • ConcordBear

    Softball is clearly #3.
    Bama and Boomer both have a better starting pitcher.
    I’d put our entire team up as #1 but softball can have 1 pitcher carry you to the top and those two teams appear to have the two best pitchers.
    Hope Cal’s pitcher can take that next step or we recruit a Championship girl in the circle.

  • wehofx

    Cal Softball, congratulations on a great season!

    CB, agree, 1 pitcher really can dominate. Sawa few innings. The thing i like about Softball as opposed to mlb is the game goes so much faster. None of that bs where the hitter takes a minute dicking around between every pitch.

    Go Bears!

  • Will

    MoreNCS_are_ignored and sanctioned! troll post blocked


  • BlueNGold

    I suppose there is some solice in knowing that the team that beat us ended up winning the championship.