Let me set the scene. It’s Game Two of the 2016 Women’s College World Series. Auburn needs a win to stay alive and force a third and final game against the Oklahoma Sooners. Emily Carosone would later hit a memorable walk-off grand slam in the bottom of the eighth inning while Gus Malzahn and Bruce Pearl cheered side-by-side in Oklahoma City.
But Carosone’s blast would have never been possible without Tiffany Howard’s incredible catch to rob Oklahoma of a go-ahead home run.
Tiffany Howard Robs Oklahoma
In the top of the sixth inning, Oklahoma was threatening. A runner was on first with two outs when the Sooner at the plate sent a ball high into the night sky to left field. It looked like a go-ahead two-run home run.
Tiffany Howard had other plans.
The All-American outfielder jumped, reached over the wall and robbed it to end the inning. She immediately threw her hands up in celebration after coming down with the ESPN SportsCenter Top 10 play.
“I’ve literally dreamed of that my entire life,” Howard said afterward.
“I owe Tiffany like a million steak dinners,” Auburn pitcher Rachael Walters said after the over-the-wall catch.
Howard robbed more than the home run. She robbed Oklahoma’s chance at winning the WCWS in two games. Emily Carosone’s walk-off shot in the eight inning sent the series to a decisive Game Three, which Auburn lost 2-1.
Auburn’s playoff run included beating UCLA, Georgia and Florida State before falling short in the final game. The Tigers haven’t been back to Oklahoma City since 2016, but if they do fans in The Plains can expect plays like this.
These days, Tiffany Howard is working toward becoming a veterinarian, but Auburn fans will always remember her for her incredibly long ball thievery in 2016.