Story by Donnie Smith, NAIA
CLERMONT, Fla. – (Box Score) (Bracket) For the 10th time in 37 years, the championship banner from the NAIA Softball World Series will be heading to Oklahoma City. The Stars of Oklahoma City University came away with a 4-1 victory over Corban (Ore.) to claim the 2017 title. The 37th annual event is hosted by PFX Athletics for the first time. Follow along on social media with #NAIASBWorldSeries on Twitter (@NAIA), Facebook (@PlayNAIA) and Instagram (@playnaia).
McRae Cayton's RBI single got the Stars scoring started, helping OCU post two runs on three hits in the top of the first inning.
This was the first championship game appearance for Corban (Ore.) in any sport…The Warriors were making their first NAIA Softball World Series appearance…Corban's Rainee Sluder carried momentum from Game 17 into the title game, going 2-for-2…The Warriors posted 10 hits as a team in the losing effort with eight different players recording at least one…Oklahoma City sophomore pitcher Georgia Wall was named the World Series Most Valuable Player for the second year in a row, posting a 0.25 ERA in 28 innings of work, breaking the previous tournament record held by the Stars in 2012 of 0.32... Wall went the distance in all four games, posting two shutouts…The first four hitters in the Stars' lineup were responsible for 10 of the 11 hits. “Our MO all season has been try to score early and hang on,” said McSpadden…Jaci Smith led the team in batting over its four-game tournament, hitting .500 with three runs scored… Oklahoma City now stands with an NAIA record 10 championships in 30 appearances and 124 all-time victories.
Hear from the Coach:
“What I was so impressed with was, against the second-best team in the country, she (Georgia Wall) didn't have her best stuff, and found a way to beat them twice,” said Oklahoma City coach Phil McSpadden referring to sophomore pitcher and World Series MVP Georgia Wall.
Player of the Game:
Madison Ellis was 3-for-4 with two runs scored and an RBI for the Stars…She also recorded seven assists defensively. She finished the week 4-for-10, and she made 17 assists and three putouts in 20 chances at third base.
“This was a very special group,” said McSpadden. “They're a very competitive and resilient group.”
2017 All-World Series Team:
Carly Spalding, Columbia (Mo.)
Paxton Welch, Columbia (Mo.)
Sabrina Boyd, Corban (Ore.)
Raimee Sluder, Corban (Ore.)
Jessie Isham, Corban (Ore.)
Aby Brambila, Davenport (Mich.)
Victoria Boyer, Indiana Wesleyan
Marci West, LSU Alexandria (La.)
Gabbie Andrepont, LSU Alexandria (La.)
Riley Cripe, Marian (Ind.)
Laci Joyner, Oklahoma City
McCrae Cayton, Oklahoma City
Jaci Smith, Oklahoma City
Molli Morgan, Ottawa (Kan.)
Aaliyah Oliver, Southern Oregon
Chantel Crockett, Warner (Fla.)
Most Valuable Player - Georgia Wall, Oklahoma City