* Click here to see a photo gallery of pix from the Ducks' first three days in Oklahoma City before the start of the World Series Thursday.
Wednesday, May 30th
It is the third day that we have been in Oklahoma City and at this point we are excited that it is getting closer to Thursday.
Thursday means game day and we could not feel more prepared. We are playing a team that we beat once in Pac-12 play and lost to once, but we know what we are going up against. There won’t be any surprises.
However, before we get too far ahead of ourselves, it’s been a great experience soaking everything in.
The first day was a travel day from Austin, Texas to OKC. It was pretty uneventful and I don’t think anybody could quite comprehend where we were going and that we had actually fulfilled our season-long goal of getting to the World Series. We ate dinner and called it a night because it had been pretty hectic between celebrating the night before and talking to all of our relatives that day about the game (and how exciting it was for everyone at home watching). The hotel that our team is staying at and the one across the street both have World Series banners up in the lobby and outside of the hotel, which makes it a fun environment to be in.
On Monday, we had a light practice at the batting cages where we actually saw our athletic trainer, fitness trainer, AND media guy try to hit off of Coach White. That was pretty interesting and entertaining to say the least.
However, yesterday was when most of the teams started arriving and the festivities of the College World Series began. In the morning we went to Central Oklahoma University to practice on their softball field, run with Coach Dillon, and do a light lift to keep us in shape since we have been on the road for so long. After a great practice with everyone, we headed back to the hotel to get ready for the banquet at the National Cowboy Museum.
At the banquet, all of the eight teams gathered for a welcoming from the World Series staff and a few questions for a representative from all of the teams. Our representative was Allie Burger and she did a great job relaying to everybody how excited we were to make it here for the first time since 1989! They also announced the winner of the 2012 USA Softball Player of the Year, which went to Keilani Ricketts. It was fun saying hello to all of the players that we have played with in the past and wishing them good luck.
Today, the day before the games start was definitely a preparation day. There were a lot of exciting things that happened and an overall happy day for the whole team.
Right after breakfast, our administrator Lisa Peterson told us to meet in the lobby and introduced us to two very nice men from Nike. They said that they had never done it before but they were giving us gifts for making it to the WCWS!
We already knew that it was going to be really good looking stuff because we love Nike apparel. Every one of us had a bag with our name on it that had the WCWS logo printed on them. We received two shirts, two sweatshirts, and a hat all with the logo on them. Everyone was ecstatic trying stuff on and taking pictures of the clothing. We were really appreciative and thanked them a billion times.
After that, we headed to study hall to work on some homework before we bussed over to the University of Oklahoma to practice for a couple hours.
After an efficient (and sweaty) practice, we went to the Hall of Fame stadium to do some video interviews and clips for commercials and entertainment on the jumbo-tron at the games. We also had to introduce ourselves and say a fun fact about ourselves. I didn’t know we had such interesting people on our team!
It’s been a lot of fun so far but it’s time to focus and realize that now that we have reached our first goal, it’s time to move on to the next: becoming National Champions. It’s completely possible with the group of girls we have on this team and now all we need to do is believe in ourselves and be the RELENTLESS team that we are.
- #19 Janie Takeda