Mike Candrea never met John Wooden.
But he felt like he has.
"Anyone in coaching follows what he has done," the Arizona Wildcats coach said. "I've got all his books, absolutely. He's quite a special person, and I hope things turn out all right."
Candrea spoke about Wooden on Friday afternoon, hours before the Wizard of Westwood passed away at a Los Angeles hospital.
"Ninety-nine years old is a pretty good life," Candrea said. "I hope I can reach that point."
Day of rest
Fighting mononucleosis, UA left fielder Brittany Lastrapes did not participate in Friday's practice.
The UA practiced from noon to 2 p.m. (Oklahoma City time). Lastrapes stayed at the team hotel, in the air conditioning. She should play when the UA takes on Washington today in the Women's College World Series.
"The less she can be out in the sun …," Candrea said. "And maybe with a little rest today, she'll feel a little better tomorrow."
By the numbers
8,694 Friday night's attendance, the largest for any session in tournament history.
Hawaii lost to Arizona 8-3 on Feb. 27.
Still, coach Bob Coolen said that experience will help if the Rainbow Wahine play the Wildcats tonight.
Hawaii has also faced Washington, the other possible night-game opponent, this year.
"They know what we're all about," Coolen said. "We know what they're all about."
Coolen said the team will sleep in - or maybe go to the hotel pool - before watching the Washington/Arizona game on television. Hawaii faces the winner tonight.
The Rainbow Wahine lost 5-2 to UCLA on Friday night.
"They'll come out tonight, and put this behind them," Coolen said.
Ivy Renfroe overpowered Georgia in much the same way she did the Arizona Wildcats, leading Tennessee to a 7-5 win Friday night.
"I say they call this game fast-pitch," UT coach Ralph Weekly said. "They don't call it fast-run, they don't call it fast-throw, they don't call it fast-hit."
The Bulldogs didn't score until the bottom of the fourth against Tennessee, when they trailed 7-0 and seemed on the verge of a run-rule loss. They plated one run in the fourth and fifth, and added an Ashley Razey three-run homer in the seventh.
"I think ultimately the Bruins are on a mission. And today was just Game 2 of a tournament."
UCLA coach Kelly Inouye-Perez, after the Bruins beat Hawaii 5-2.
Before she pitched against Georgia on Thursday, Washington star Danielle Lawrie sent a message to a friend.
"You're our guardian Angel, Ashley Aven," she wrote on her Twitter page. "We're all thinkin' of you. Have a great time at your prom. I'll be taking big deep breaths for you. Love you."
Aven is an 18-year-old high school senior - and former softball player - in the Seattle area who is battling acute myeloid leukemia.
She and Lawrie are part of one of the best stories in softball this year. Aven threw out the first pitch of a Huskies game against Stanford on May 7. She asked Lawrie to hit a homer for her. Lawrie did - a walk-off two-run shot.
By the numbers
14Consecutive pitches fouled off by Hawaii's Alex Aguirre before hitting a two-run homer - on the 17th pitch of the at-bat - in the fourth inning. The Rainbow Wahine lost to UCLA 5-2.
Washington center fielder Alyson McWherter has her post-collegiate career mapped out - as a second lieutenant in the U.S. Army.
She will work as an Army recruiter this summer before joining basic training at Fort Sam Houston in Texas in January.
Next May, she will report to Fort Stewart, Ga., to join the Army's Third Infantry Division.
Dating to the Civil War, at least one member of every generation of her family has enrolled in the armed forces.
Compiled by Patrick Finley