March 25, 2013
Sixteenth-ranked Arizona softball (21-10) tallied nine hits but only scored thrice against 17th-ranked Washington (24-8), which took the series with its 8-3 victory in front of 2,001 fans at Hillenbrand Stadium on Monday.
UA left the bases loaded on two occasions and stranded nine total runners in the game, pushing the total to 24 for the series.
Hallie Wilson went 3-for-4 on the day, including her fourth home run of the season, a solo homer that put UA on the board in the third inning.
Lauren Young added two hits, including a two-RBI double, her 21st and 22nd runs batted in on the year.
Arizona used a trio of pitchers in the game. Estela Piñon allowed three runs, two earned, on three hits with two walks and a strikeout. The junior took the loss to drop to 7-3 on the season. Shelby Babcock allowed five runs on six hits with two strikeouts in four innings and Nancy Bowling pitched a scoreless seventh inning.
Washington hit three home runs in the game and clouted a pair of doubles. Missy Taukeiaho hit a solo homer in the first, Victoria Hayward hit a solo blast in the fourth and Kaitlin Inglesby hit a two-run big fly in the sixth.
Arizona appeared poised to respond to the Taukeiaho homer in the bottom of the first when it loaded the bases with help from a two-out single followed by a walk. Kelsey Rodriguez hit a sharp grounder up the middle which was knocked down by Inglesby. Second baseman Kelli Suguro gathered the ricochet and tossed it to shortstop Jennie McNeill for the force to end the inning and keep the Cats off the board.
Piñon allowed a single and a walk to the first two batters she faced in the third and was pulled in favor of Babcock. The first batter to face Babcock, Inglesby, doubled in a run. The next batter, Hooch Fagaly, hit a fly ball to right field. The ball was dropped by Courtney Rodriguez, allowing another run to score to make it 3-0. With runners on second and third and nobody out, Babcock retired the next three batters she faced to limit the damage.
UA cut into the lead with a leadoff homer by Wilson in the third.
The Huskies struck for another run in the fourth and two more in fourth to stretch Arizona's deficit to five runs. Lauren Young doubled in a pair in the bottom of the fifth to pull the Cats within three, but Washington responded with two runs of its own in the next frame.
UA loaded the bases with two out in the sixth. Chelsea Goodacre, Arizona's leading power source with 12 home runs, was on deck representing the potential tying run, when Chelsea Suitos hit a sharp liner to left field. Taukeiaho gloved the hard-hit ball to end the inning and keep Goodacre out of the batter's box.
Arizona heads to Salt Lake City for a three game series with Utah, Thursday, March 28-Saturday, March 30. The first meeting between the two clubs will be on Thursday at 6:00 p.m. MDT.