NCAA Region 3 Softball - Tucson, Ariz.
TUCSON, Ariz.--National third seed Arizona used pitching by its entire staff -- Alicia Hollowell, Leslie Wolfe and Taryn Mowatt -- to toss a no-hitter, and used some big hitting to take a five-inning 12-0 victory over Lehigh in NCAA Region 3 action at Hillenbrand Stadium Friday night.
Hollowell and Wolfe threw two innings apiece and Mowatt threw the fifth, combined to strike out 10. At the plate, the Cats had 10 hits and Jackie Coburn collected five RBI to pace the attack. Hollowell had five strikeouts, Wolfe had four and Mowatt had one. Mowatt was one pitch away from making it a perfect game, but hit pinch-hitter Lauren Haney before getting a ground ball to end the game.
Arizona wasted no time putting runs on the board. Caitlin Lowe led off the first with a single up the middle, Autumn Champion and Kristie Fox drew walks, and then Jackie Coburn hit a sinking liner for a two-run single to the opposite field in right. Shelly Schultz capped the rally with a three-run home run to center off Lehigh pitcher Emily Ling to make it 5-0.
Coburn followed bunt singles by Adrienne Acton and Lowe, and a walk to Fox, with another single to drive in two more runs in the bottom of the second to make it 7-0. After Schultz struck out, UA reloaded the bases with a walk by Crystal Farley but Ling got Callista Balko to fly to right field to stop the rally.
UA loaded the bases again in the third, this time with a walk by Acton, another infield hit by Lowe and a two-out walk to Fox. Coburn drew a walk to collect her fifth RBI and UA reached the eight-run mercy rule margin. Ling got a fielder's choice to stop the damage.
Balko hit a two-run home run off Lehigh reliever Heather Hamasaki in the bottom of the fourth, then Lowe collected her fourth hit of the game with another two-run blast to provide the final margin. Lowe scored four times and pushed her hits total to 90 for the year.
Arizona will meet Oklahoma State at 1:30 p.m. (MST/PDT) Saturday in the winner's bracket, while Lehigh drops to a 4 p.m. elimination game against Princeton.
Lehigh's Jessica Young: "We wanted to come in here and show them that we could fight. We look at tomorrow as if it's a whole new day and we look forward to coming out and giving our all."
Lehigh Coach Fran Troyan - "Our pitching was rusty. Arizona is an outstanding team. Any power shortage they had was sure turned around. They hit the ball well."
Arizona's Jackie Coburn - "We just wanted to come out and get some confidence, score runs and play good defense."
Arizona's Alicia Hollowell - "It was nice to get some rest. I came out ready to go. Then we put the other pitchers in and did a great job."
Arizona Coach Mike Candrea - "We came out swinging the bats. We did what we needed to do. We came out aggressively and showed a little emotion."
TUCSON, Ariz.--Jessica Hoppock struck out 10 and scattered seven hits to help lead No. 2 seeded Oklahoma State to a 6-1 victory over three seed Princeton in both teams first game in NCAA Region 3 play Friday at Hillenbrand Stadium.
OSU (34-22) scored four runs in the bottom of the first to take a sizeable early lead, with a run-scoring single by Courtney Totte, a two-run double by Dominique Van Nortwick and an RBI single by Megan Carey. The first run was unearned, with Princeton pitcher Erin Snyder's error putting the first runner aboard. Two wild pitches hurt the Tigers, too.
Princeton (35-19)came right back and loaded the bases in the top of the second, and cut the lead when OSU pitcher hit Cristina Cobb-Adams with a pitch. But she struck out Lauren Bierman for the second time to end the threat and strand three.
The Tigers missed a scoring opportunity in the fifth. WIth one out, Cobb-Adams dropped a double down the right field line and Bierman hit one into the gap in left that might have scored Cobb-Adams, but she held until the ball fell and moved to third. Melissa Finley lofted a fly ball to left, and leftfielder Carey gunned down Cobb-Adams at the plate for a double play.
Carey followed her fine defensive play with a big hit in the bottom of the inning, following a Tara Jeffery single with a home run over the left field fence for the 6-1 score.
Oklahoma State will play Arizona at 1:30 p.m. Saturday (MST/PDT). Princeton meets Lehigh at 4 p.m.
Oklahoma pitcher Jessica Hoppock - "I'm confident. I threw a lot last year and I felt good throwing a lot today. It helps a lot when you team puts up four runs in the first inning."
Oklahoma State's Dominique Van Nortwick - "It always helps when you have runners on base. It makes it easier to hit."
Oklahoma Coach Margaret Rebenar - "We had a good team effort against a quality team. We don't know what heat is; we'll come out anytime and play. We'll play in any weather. Jessica works better in the heat."
[Game time temperature: 102.]
Princeton's Ty Ries - "It's disappointing leaving runners on. We had some scoring chances and we didn't get the hit when we needed it. We have to make adjustments tomorrow.
Princeton Coach Maureen Barron - "Oklahoma State played a good game, but it was not our best effort. We played sloppy defense and didn't come out sharp. We left too many runners on base."