OKLAHOMA CITY--Arizona sophomore Jennie Finch scattered five hits and hung on to help lead the Wildcats (59-8) to a narrow 4-2 victory over top-ranked and No. 1 seed Washington to remain alive in Women's College World Series action. Washington completed the year at 62-9. Finch walked five and struck out five.
Washington loaded the bases with two outs in the first when UA pitcher Finch (29-2) walked two and gave up a short single to left by Kim DePaul, but UW pitcher Jennifer Spediacci grounded into a fielder's choice to end the threat.
Arizona put two runners on with one out in the bottom of the first with a walk to Nicole Giordano and an infield single by Katie Swan, but Spediacci struck out Toni Mascarenas and Lindsey Collins.
Washington scored an unearned run in the third. With one
Topping doubled down the left field line and after Jaime Clark
scored when UA third baseman Mascarenas booted a grounder. But
out Spediacci and Melissa Downs to strand two runners.
The Cats came back with an unearned run in the bottom of the inning when Finch walked, then scored when UW third baseman Kim DePaul threw a force-out attempt at second into right field.
Erin Helgeland led off the UW fourth with a home run to left to close to 3-2. Arizona moved ahead by two again, 4-2, with an unearned run in the bottom of the inning. Giordano and Swan had infield singles, moved up on a passed ball, then Giordano scored on Mascarenas' sacrifice fly.
The Cats only managed six hits off Spediacci (34-5), but earned their second consecutive victory over the Huskies' ace. Arizona lost to UW four times this season, twice in non-conference play, and finished a half-game behind the Huskies in the final Pac-10 standings.
Arizona will play Oklahoma in a semifinal game at 2:30 p.m. CDT Sunday. The Wildcats have to beat the Sooners twice to earn a spot in Monday's NCAA championship game.