WCIA — Morgan Day grew up wanting to attend the College World Series, now the former Tuscola standout and Oklahoma State pitcher is preparing to play on college softball’s biggest stage.

“It’s unbelievable, I still haven’t wrapped my brain around it,” Day said on a Zoom call from Oklahoma City, the site of this year’s WCWS. “Like this is something I remember when I was on the WCIA 3 all area team, my goal was to go to the College World Series, I just wanted to watch, and now I’m in it.”

And not just in the World Series, Day is a big reason why the Pokes are playing in the Elite Eight for a third straight season. The Big 12 tournament’s most outstanding player has made the most of her only season in Stillwater, she’s second on the team with 13 wins, averaging more than a strikeout per inning.

“As soon as I got to OSU, it was just this was all we’ve talked about, this is everything we’ve prepared for so while it is so mind blowing to think of where I was to now, I feel like I’ve been so embraced by the expectations and standard of our program that this feels normal,” Day added. “This feels like exactly what we’ve been working for.”

A year ago a trip to the World Series still seemed like a long shot for Day. After a historic four years at Illinois State where she cemented her name in the Redbird record book, Day had plenty of options for her grad year, thanks a blanket COVID-19 waiver. Some of the top teams in the country came calling but Day is right at home at OSU, with her hometown of Tuscola fresh in her mind.

“The posts, the texts that I’ve gotten from people in the community, they’ve really uplifted me and it’s really cool and I can feel the love from them and tell that they are so proud of me and to be uplifted like that from my hometown community just means the absolute world to me,” Day said.

No. 7 seed Oklahoma State faces Arizona on Thursday night at 8:30 p.m. from Oklahoma City in a game that will air nationally on ESPN.