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WCWS notebook: Sooners will spend part of off-day at fundraising walk

The OU softball team plans to spend part of Saturday supporting an ulcerative colitis walk. Catcher Jessica Shults has battled the ailment.
by Michael Baldwin Published: June 1, 2012

How will the Sooners spend their day off after posting a 3-0 win over top-seeded California in a winners' bracket final?

They'll spend part of the day supporting an ulcerative colitis walk.

Jessica Shults (who has battled the ailment) has been bothering me for three months about it,” said OU coach Patty Gasso. “I said, ‘We're going to be playing. She goes, ‘No, we're not going to be playing that day.'”

Shults proved to be a prophet. The Sooners are one win away from advancing to the best-of-three finals, leaving them time for the Take Steps Fundraising Walk, which takes place at 6 p.m. Saturday at Stars and Stripes Park at 3701 S. Lake Hefner Drive. It will benefit the Crohn's & Colitis Foundation.

As for the walk, Gasso said: “The team has decided we're going to go out and support this cause and maybe walk a mile. We don't want to waste the day walking too hard but it's completely in support for Jessica Shults.”

A new WCWS attendance record

Friday night's session drew a standing-room-only crowd of 9,209, a Women's College World Series single-session record, surpassing the 9,080 fans that watched the Saturday night session two years ago.

The Friday session sold out on Thursday. Saturday night's session already is a sellout. Standing-room only tickets will be sold Saturday beginning at 5 p.m. Tickets are still available for the Saturday afternoon session.

Unseasonably cool temperatures

Most years, WCWS officials have to monitor fans who might be affected by extreme heat. Last year, temperatures surpassed 100 degrees. For Friday night's session, most fans wore jackets.

Rare north, chilly winds have made hitting home runs more difficult. Only four home runs have been hit through six games, two by the Sooners. Winds on Saturday will shift back to the south, so Hall of Fame Stadium should play more like it has in previous years for the remainder of the tournament.

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by Michael Baldwin
Redhawks, Barons, MLB, NFL Reporter
Mike Baldwin has been a sports reporter for The Oklahoman since 1982. Mike graduated from Okmulgee High School in 1974 and attended Oklahoma Christian University, graduating with a journalism degree in 1978. Mike's first job was sports editor...
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