The Norman Transcript


May 31, 2014

This one could be Walton’s to lose

OKLAHOMA CITY — The Women’s College World Series is a long way from being over. After Friday night, however, a team to beat has emerged.

The Florida Gators.

After Friday’s 4-0 win over top-seeded Oregon, the Gators have outscored their opponents 64-4 so far in the 2014 NCAA postseason. They’ve also posted seven shutouts in eight games.

The spot is not an unfamiliar one to Florida coach Tim Walton. The former Oklahoma baseball player and past assistant on Sooner softball coach Patty Gasso’s staff has taken teams to the WCWS six times in the last seven seasons and reached the championship series in 2009 and 2011.

The only thing missing from Walton’s resumé is a national title. He wasn’t going to put the cart before horse following the win over the Ducks, but he likes the way his team is playing.

“This is a great spot to be in, no doubt — being 2-0 in the winners’ bracket,” he said.

The Gators (53-12) get today off. Florida rightfielder Bailey Castro, who went 3 for 4 with two RBIs against the Ducks, said a day of go-cart racing is on today’s agenda.

Florida will rest up for either Kentucky, Baylor or Florida to emerge from today’s games into Sunday’s bracket title game.

Walton’s teams have made it to the championship by going 3-0 in the bracket and fighting through the losers’ bracket in previous trips.

He refused to get too excited over being three wins away from his first national championship.

The way his team is playing makes it hard not to be.

“This is a great spot to be in, no doubt; being 2-0 in the winners’ bracket,” Walton said. “… I don’t know the bracket. I don’t know how it turns, flips, moves, to be honest with you. But the great part for me is somebody has to beat us twice and I do like our chances with regard to that and the way we’re playing right now.”

John Shinn

Follow me @john_shinn


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