April 6, 2002
TUCSON--Lovie Jung hit a one-out home run in the bottom of the seventh to give Arizona a come-back 3-2 victory over top-ranked UCLA in college softball before a crowd of 2,606 at Hillenbrand Stadium.
The victory preserved No. 2-ranked Arizona's home-field winning streak at 70 games and preserved UA pitcher Jennie Finch's personal mark at 60 consecutive decisions.
The Cats managed only four hits off UCLA hurler Amanda Freed (15-2), but two were homers. Finch (20-0) gave up seven hits, tying her season-high, but struck out eight and pitched herself out of a couple of jams. The Cats moved to 4-0 in league play and dropped the Bruins to a 1-3 mark. UCLA dropped to 33-6 overall and UA improved to 35-4.
Arizona stranded runners at third in the first and third innings, without getting a hit. An error by Bruin shortstop Natasha Watley allowed Leneah Manuma to reach third from first on a potential double-play ball but Freed struck out Jenny Gladding in the first. In the third Courtney Fossatti reached in a fielder's choice, moved to second on a walk and third on an fielder's choice, but was stranded at third when Gladding lined to short.
The Bruins also missed some opportunities. Stephanie Ramos doubled with one out in the second but Finch bore down and got the next two batters. In the third, Toria Auelua led off with a double and moved to third an out later on a single by Watley, but Freed gounded out and Tairia Mims popped up.
The Bruins scored to take a 1-0 lead in the fifth. Monique Mejia led off with a double off Finch's glove that spun into shallow left field, and moved the third on a sacrific bunt by Watley. After Finch struck out Freed, Mims singled to center for the RBI.
UA got on the board in the bottom of the sixth. Finch led off with a single to left. Pinch-runner Rebekah Quiroz was forced at second on a sacrific attempt by pinch-hitter Carrie Hagen. But Vandergeest blasted her ninth homer of the season over the rightfield fence for a 2-1 lead.
Finch walked Auelua on four straight pitches in the top of the seventh. Pinch-runner Amanda Simpson moved to second on a groundout, then scored in Watley's single to right, and Watley was cut down trying for second on the throw to the plate but the score was tied, 2-2.
Jung's homer was her 12th of the season and the Wildcats' 70th of the year.
The two teams complete the series at 1 p.m. Sunday.