Oklahoma stars Keilani Ricketts and Jessica Shults preview the World Cup of Softball

BY ANTHONY SLATER Modified: June 25, 2012 at 11:09 pm •  Published: June 25, 2012

Less than three weeks ago, in excruciating fashion, Jessica Shults' and Keilani Ricketts' dream season at Oklahoma was cut short, just innings before reaching the ultimate goal.

The final loss, a 5-4 comeback by Alabama to capture the 2012 NCAA softball championship, still sticks with the two stars.

But instead of stewing at home, wasting away the summer with what could have been, both have found a rather useful distraction — playing for the USA National Softball team.

Starting Wednesday, the Americans will host the World Cup of Softball at Hall of Fame Stadium, giving Ricketts and Shults another chance to win a tournament on the famed field just 25 minutes from where they attend college.

Before the event, both sat down and talked about their Women's College World Series disappointment and excitement for the upcoming tournament:

For you, it was a frustrating end to a great college season. Do you still think about what happened?

JS: Yeah, I still think about it, but not too much, I'm focused on USA now and winning championships here.

KR: I don't think I'm completely over what happened. But I'm just excited to get out here with Team USA.

Does playing this tournament so soon help you forget about what happened earlier this month at the WCWS?

JS: Definitely. Just being able to jump back into something else has been kind of nice, being able to get my mind of the World Series. Just a great group of girls here to play with and I'm becoming great friends with them.

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