TUCSON, Ariz. -- The top-ranked Arizona softball team (15-0) came back from a 2-1 deficit to defeat an Eastern Michigan (0-4) team that lost to the Cats 15-0 on Friday. The game featured two rain delays, one of which was 50 minutes long, as well as a 3-2 walk-off victory for UA.
Junior pitcher Alicia Hollowell (10-0) earned her tenth victory of the year for her one perfect inning of relief.
In Arizona's half of the first inning, Kristie Fox doubled in Autumn Champion to put the game's first run on the board.
After a scoreless top half of the second inning, the skies opened and lightning was present in the area, prompting a 50-minute rain delay.
After the delay, UA appeared to have something going when Crystal Farley and Allyson Von Liechtenstein both singled with two outs, but EMU pitcher Aimee Woodrum induced Caitlin Lowe into an inning-ending ground out.
With two out in the top of the third, Eagle shortstop Lauren Clark homered to right field off of UA freshman Taryne Mowatt to give EMU its first run in eight innings against Arizona.
Arizona failed to respond in its half of the third, as the toughest part of the Cats' lineup was retired in order.
The Eagles continued their attack when Liz Flack led off the top of the fourth inning with a triple down the rain-dampened right field line. Three batters and two outs later, Flack still stood on third base. Flack was caught lurking off base, drawing a pickoff throw from catcher Callista Balko. On Balko's throw, Flack broke for home, where she was safe when Balko dropped third baseman Jackie Coburn's return throw. Flack's run gave EMU a 2-1 lead, its only lead of the series, also marking just the second time that UA has trailed this year.
The score remained 2-1 in favor of the visiting Eagles until Balko came up to bat with two out in the bottom of the sixth and smashed a home run to center field, her third of the year to tie the game at 2-2.
Fresh off of her five inning no-hitter yesterday, Hollowell relieved Mowatt in the seventh. Mowatt finished without a decision, giving up one earned run on three hits, recording 10 strikeouts. Hollowell got Lauren Allen to fly out to left field, but the game was halted by another rain delay. This time the delay was significantly shorter, just 11 minutes in duration. Once the skies had cleared for a second time, Hollowell struck out the next two hitters to end the Eagles' half of the seventh inning.
Playing for one run, UA's Jennifer Martinez led off the bottom of the seventh with a single to center, before freshman Adrienne Acton came in to pinch run for the Wildcat senior. Shelly Schultz followed by driving the ball to right center field, where Stephanie Sabo was unable to make the running catch. Martinez scored all the way from first off of Sabo's error to end the game.
UA will head to Las Vegas next weekend for the UNLV Tournament, where the Wildcats will face UNLV, Bowling Green, North Carolina State, Miami-OH, and Long Island University.