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Softball squad captures first-ever NCAA title with 6-0 victory over Pac-10 rival, defending champion Arizona

Daily Planet Wire Services
Tuesday May 28, 2002


OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. - Cal defeated Arizona State, 3-0, Sunday afternoon in the semifinals of the Women’s College World Series at ASA Hall of Fame Stadium to advance to its first-ever national championship game. It was also the Bears’ 55th win of the season, the most ever in the program’s 31-year existence.  

The Bears scored all three runs on one play in the bottom of the first inning. With two outs, runners ran on contact as freshman Jessica Pamanian’s dribbler to third was bare-handed by ASU’s Phelan Wright, who side-armed the throw off the mark to first. Freshman Kaleo Eldredge and junior Kristen Morley came in easily as right fielder Kristen Farber tried to field the ball off the fence along the first base line. Junior Jen Deering, who was pinch running for junior Veronica Nelson, crossed the plate when Farber attempted to throw out Pamanian at second.  

Senior pitcher Jocelyn Forest, who has pitched every game in the NCAA Tournament, threw her sixth one-hitter of the season and her 12th shutout of the year. In seven innings, she struck out four batters and walked none for her 34th complete game in 2002.  

Wright led off the top of the second inning with a bloop single to center field, but that’s all that the Sun Devils could muster. ASU had no other base runners after stranding Wright.  

Forest, who collected her personal-best 28th win of the season, didn’t dominate the Sun Devils’ lineup with strikeout after strikeout as she has done on many occasions this postseason, but instead, forced many batters into pop flies with a rise ball that jumped more than usual.  

Four different Bears collected hits on the day, including Eldredge (1-for-3), who is on a four-game hitting streak.  

Cal faces the winner of the second semifinal game between Florida State and Arizona. The Bears took two of three in the regular season from the 2001 defending national champion Wildcats, and won 1-0 against the Seminoles Friday.  

The national championship game is slated for Monday at 10:15 a.m., live on ESPN.