OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — Bianka Bell and Kellsi Kloss hit home runs to help LSU beat Auburn 6-1 on Thursday in the Women's College World Series.
Bell, a first-team All-American, homered in the top of the first inning. She wasn't swinging for the fence.
"With two outs, I was just trying to get on base, find my way on and just hope someone can score me in," she said. "I guess I just got all of the ball, and it went out."
LSU scored four runs in the third, highlighted by Kloss' two-run shot.
"I wasn't trying to do anything too big," Kloss said. "I was just trying to make an adjustment for my last at-bat and try to get a little more on top of the ball. And I put a good swing on it. And I stayed inside it enough to hit the pole."
Emily Griggs had three hits and Constance Quinn added two for fifth-seeded LSU (51-12). The Tigers will play defending champion Florida on Friday in a winners' bracket game. Florida opened with a 7-2 victory over Tennessee.
Auburn (54-10) will play Tennessee on Saturday in an elimination game.
Auburn had won eight in a row since losing to LSU in its regular-season finale, including three wins to claim the Southeastern Conference tournament title. The Tigers had scored at least four runs in all but one of those victories.
Carley Hoover pitched a complete game and threw just 78 pitches for LSU. She allowed six hits and struck out five to improve to 18-5.
"I think the bigger the game, the better she pitches," LSU coach Beth Torina said. "From what we know about her this year, she wants the ball in these situations, and she truly thrives in them. So it's a lot of fun having somebody like her on our team and having somebody you know can perform under pressure. I think that's the whole key to this is being able to get it done when the lights are on."
Auburn, in its first World Series appearance, didn't score until the fifth. Morgan Estell had two hits for the fourth-seeded Tigers. The team's pair of first-team All-Americans, Emily Carosone and Kasey Cooper, went a combined 1 for 6.
Marcy Harper started and got the loss for Auburn. Rachael Walters pitched 4 1-3 innings of relief and gave up just one run on four hits.
Auburn coach Clint Myers said he still feels good about his team.
"We're still in this," he said. "We talked about it as a team. We played a very good LSU team. The difference as I see it is that with two outs, they got key hits and we had opportunities."
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Posted on Fri, May 29, 2015
by CLIFF BRUNT, AP Sports Writer