Megan Langenfeld and 2010. Her senior season as a UCLA Bruin — and the most memorable one of them all.
Everything was in slow motion, she said. The softball was practically floating to her in the batter’s box.
Langenfeld was already one of the best players in college softball going into that Women’s College World Series. But in this particular week in Oklahoma City, she was unstoppable. Langenfeld hit .706 with four home runs and earned three victories in the circle. She racked up 12 hits that week and tied a WCWS record with two home runs in a game, but was the first to do it in the championship series. She also set a WCWS record with 10 total bases (two home runs, two singles).
She was on a different level in Game 1 of the championship series. Not only did she hit a home run early in the game and total 10 total bases, but when she walked up to her last at-bat she did something special.
UCLA gave up a 4-2 lead in the top of the seventh inning, and Arizona looked like it might win it in the bottom of the 7th. But what should’ve been the final out of the game on a fly ball from Dani Yudin resulted in a miscommunication in the Wildcats outfield, and the Bruins had another shot. Arizona then intentionally walked Julie Burney to bring up Kaila Shull. She doubled to knock in pinch runner Marti Reed with a double to tie the game and force extra innings. The game was 5-5 in the bottom of the eighth inning when Langenfeld came up. She was already 3-for-4 with a home run, two singles and a strikeout on a pitch up in the zone.
The Wildcats decided to pitch to Langenfeld, despite the damage she had already done. Arizona pitcher Kenzie Fowler was successful against Langenfeld in the previous at-bat, when she struck out swinging.
Langenfeld wouldn’t be fooled again. She knew Fowler might go back to that very same pitch, and this time she would be ready. She got under it and drove it out of the park to take a 1-0 lead in the best-of-three championship series.
The rest is history. A blister prevented Langenfeld from pitching in Game 2, but it didn’t prevent much else. When Langenfeld stepped into the box, most everyone was surprised when they pitched to her. And in similar Langenfeld, Oklahoma City style — she hit another one out of the park. The Bruins captured their 11th NCAA softball title with a 15-9 win over Arizona, and Langenfield ended her legendary UCLA career on top and as the WCWS Most Outstanding Player.