May 24, 1998
OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. - Home runs by Arizona sluggers Leah Braatz and Leticia Pineda helped drive the Wildcats past Oklahoma State, 5-0, and into the NCAA finals for the eighth consecutive season.
Nancy Evans (36-1) held the Cowgirls in check with a two-hit, six-strikeout pitching performance through five innings before giving way to freshman Becky Lemke for her first College World experience to open the sixth. Against Evans, OSU did not advance either of its two base runners past first base. Evans earned her 36th victory against one loss.
Lemke struck out two, but Kristin Garcia reached on a strikeout-wild pitch and Lemke later hit Jaime Foutch to Garcia in scoring position before retiring the side on a lineout by Shannon Sullivan.
Evans and Lemke combined for the team's 35th shutout of the year. UA has held opponents scoreless for 47 consecutive innings and have seven consecutive shutouts -- six in the postseason.
In four years, Evans College World Series record is 10-1 with an earned run average of 0.96.
Braatz tied the NCAA career home run record with her 25th of the season, a line drive to left in the first inning which gave Arizona a quick 2-0 lead. It gave her 85 home runs, the same number former teammate Laura Espinoza hit from 1992-95. Pineda hit her 20th of the year, also a two-run shot, to highlight a three-run third.
The Cats' victory established an NCAA single-season record, surpassing the 66-6 record Arizona put up in 1995. Arizona also extended its winning streak to 29 games.
Oklahoma State finished its season at 42-19. Jenn Markert (15-6) took the loss.
Okla St 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 - 0 2 0 Arizona 2 0 3 0 0 0 x - 5 7 0 Markert, Tyler (3) and Silva. Evans, Lemke (6) and Braatz. W - Evans 36-1. L - Markert 15-6. HR: Arizona, Braatz (25), Pineda (20). U - Davis, Yarranton, Morrow. T - 2:06.