WCWS Oklahoma Alabama Softball

Oklahoma pitcher Giselle Juarez points in the fourth inning during an NCAA college softball game against Alabama in the Women's College World Series in Oklahoma City, Sunday, June 2, 2019. (Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman via AP)

After staving off elimination with back-to-back day-night doubleheaders, Alabama's Cinderella run through the Women's College World Series came to an end, much like its fairy tale counterpart.

No. 1 Oklahoma unleashed three home runs over its final two innings — for a NCAA-leading 111 on the season — to deliver the eighth-seeded Crimson Tide a 7-3 loss in the second of two national semifinal games Sunday evening from USA Softball Hall of Fame Stadium in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.

The Sooners (57-4) advance to play No. 2 seed UCLA in the best-of-three WCWS national championship series beginning with Game 1 at 6:30 p.m. Monday. The Bruins edged No. 3 seeded Washington with a 3-0 walk-off win in the 10th inning earlier Sunday afternoon.

With the loss, Alabama (60-10) finishes its magical 2019 campaign having equaled its single-season program record for wins at 60, a mark set by the national championship-winning 2012 squad. The Crimson Tide set the record with its 1-0, 8-inning victory over Oklahoma in the first semifinal game of the afternoon.

In the second game Sunday night, the Sooners struck first with a no-out double to right-center field from senior Caleigh Clifton, who'd score herself on a wild pitch after back-to-back strikeouts for junior starter Krystal Goodman to go ahead 2-0 in the bottom of the first inning.

Alabama responded in kind when senior Reagan Dykes smacked a one-out solo home run to left field to cut Oklahoma's lead in half, 2-1, in the top of the second.

But the powerful Sooners offense wouldn't be held down for a second straight game as sophomore slugger Jocelyn Alo drilled a two-run home run with two outs in the bottom of the fifth that landed in the packing lot behind the stadium.

Nicole Mendes blasted another two-run no-doubter with no outs in the bottom of the sixth inning to chase Goodman, while Grace Lyons hit a solo shot with two outs to plate a 7-3 lead entering the seventh.

Goodman started in the circle after freshman ace Montana Fouts pitched back-to-back games against sixth-seeded Arizona on Saturday evening and then outdueling Sooners ace Giselle "G" Juarez in a 1-0 shutout over 8 innings earlier Sunday afternoon.

Goodman would get chased after allowing a second two-run home run in back-to-back innings to Alo and Mendes for a 6-3 advantage in the sixth.

Tide senior pinch-hitter Caroline Hardy secured Alabama's 1-0, 8-inning upset earlier Sunday that forced the winner-take-all semifinal against the Sooners.

Hardy, who has come through in the clutch as Alabama's go-to late-inning pinch-hitter throughout the postseason, sent Juarez's 3-2 offering screaming into center field with two outs, allowing fellow senior Reagan Dykes to score from second after a leadoff single to start the bottom of the eighth.

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