With the inaugural Pac-12 Conference Softball Tournament looming this week, Oregon’s softball team had about the worst weekend imaginable, shockingly losing three straight to Utah at The Jane and making their road to a Pac-12 Tournament championship much more difficult. It was the only series sweep suffered this season by Oregon, and their longest losing streak of the year.
When the Utah series began, Oregon had won 13 games in a row and was riding a tidal wave of momentum. With a victory or two, the Ducks were likely to finish in third place in the final regular season Conference standings. They would then have drawn a first-round match-up with #6 Cal, a team they swept on the road just one week ago. Instead, Oregon scored just 3 runs in the three games against the Utes, handing them the #3 seed and falling all the way to #5 where they will now have to face the Stanford Cardinal. Even worse, Oregon now resides on the same side of the bracket as #1 Seed UCLA, which the Ducks will face in the second round if they can get past the Cardinal.
Stanford won the season series, played in Eugene in mid-March, 2 games to 1. All three games were close, with the first a 3 - 1 Stanford win in 8 innings, Oregon winning the second game 2 - 1 and then Stanford winning the deciding game 2 - 1. The Cardinal finished the season 39 - 12 overall and 14 - 10 in the Conference while Oregon was 35 - 14 and also 14 - 10 in the Pac-12.
The tournament will open on Wednesday, May 10 with a single game between #8 Seed Arizona and #9 Seed Arizona State (Washington State, Colorado and USC do not field softball teams). The lucky winner of that game draws the Bruins on Thursday at 4:00 pm.
Here is the full schedule (all games played at Hillenbrand Stadium in Tucson, Arizona):
Wednesday, May 10, 2023
Game 1 - #8 Arizona vs #9 Arizona State - 6:00 pm
Thursday, May 11, 2023
Game 2 - #3 Utah vs #6 California - 10:00 am
Game 3 - #2 Washington vs #7 Oregon State - 12:30 pm
Game 4 - #1 UCLA vs Arizona/Arizona State winner - 4:00 pm
Game 5 - #4 Stanford vs #5 Oregon - 6:30 pm
Friday, May 12, 2023
Game 6 - Game 2 winner vs Game 3 winner - 4:30 pm
Game 7 - Game 4 winner vs Game 5 winner - 7:30 pm
Saturday, May 13, 2023
Championship Game - Game 6 winner vs Game 7 winner - 7:00 pm
Seniors Honored— Oregon Softball (@OregonSB) May 8, 2023
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