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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

Arizona softball defeats Cal on senior night ahead of Pac-12 Tournament

The Wildcats will have a play-in game for the Pac-12 tournament


Nathanial Stenchever

Arizona softball’s Izzy Pacho gets interviewed after a game against University of California on May 7 in Rita Hillenbrand Memorial Stadium. Arizona won their last game of the season on senior day.

In the last regular season series, the Arizona softball team played the University of California Berkeley in a three-game series from Friday, May 5, to Sunday, May 7, in Tucson at Mike Candrea Field at Rita Hillenbrand Memorial Stadium. With the season coming to an end, it was the last chance for the Wildcats to secure a better seed in the inaugural Pac-12 tournament and avoid a play-in game.  

Game 1: Friday, May 5, at 7 p.m.

On day one, Arizona started Aissa Silva in the pitching circle, and she faced Cal’s Haylei Archer

Cal struck first with 2 runs in the top of the first inning after a 2-run homer to left field by Elon Butler. However, Arizona answered in the bottom of the inning with 2 runs of their own to tie the game

After a short second inning on both sides, the Wildcats got 2 more runs after Olivia DiNardo hit a 2-run home run to left field, putting the Wildcats up 4-2. Arizona also sent Devyn Netz out to pitch in the top of the third inning. Netz closed out the game for the Wildcats

Cal got back in the game with a two-out rally in the top of the fifth after a 3-run home run to center field from Acacia Anders. Down 1 run, Arizona’s Allie Skaggs tied it up again with a solo home run, making it 5-5

Unfortunately for the Wildcats, Cal continued their hitting barrage. scoring 3 more runs in the top of the sixth inning. Arizona tried to answer in the bottom of the seventh but was unsuccessful, only scoring 1

Arizona lost game one 8-6 to Cal

Game 2: Saturday, May 6, at 6 p.m.

On day two, Arizona sent Sydney Somerndike out for her sixth start of the season. She faced Cal’s Sona Halajian, who was coming out for her seventh start of the season

Cal took the early lead with a leadoff home run from Tatum Anzaldo. She grounded out on the previous pitch but was called back to the batter’s box due to an illegal pitch by Somernidke. Cal added 2 more runs to their lead in the top of the second inning after another home run from Anzaldo.

With the Wildcats’ offense being silenced for the day so far, Cal had some unconventional scoring in the fourth inning after Brianna Hardy came in to pitch for the Wildcats in the third. After putting runners on second and third, Hardy was replaced by Silva, who immediately hit her first two batters with pitches and walked in a run. Silva walked the next two batters, scoring 2 more runs for Cal. Silva was then replaced by Netz, who got the Wildcats out of the inning and, again, finished the game as pitcher

Arizona finally found some runs in the bottom of the fourth inning, scoring 2 runs on a key hit from Izzy Pacho. The third run of the inning came from a missed throw by Cal’s catcher, letting Blaise Biringer score an unearned run

Both teams scored 2 runs in the sixth inning, keeping the game at a 3-run game with Cal up 8-5 going into the bottom of the seventh inning. After DiNardo and Skaggs struck out, Netz tried to bring some life back into the Wildcats by hitting a line drive home run that hit the left field foul pole. 

Unfortunately, the Wildcats could not find the other 2 runs to tie the game and they fell to Cal 6-8 for the second game in a row

Game 3: Sunday, May 7, at 1 p.m.

Since this was the last regular season game, Arizona made it senior day for the three seniors on the team. Brianna Hardy, Ali Ashner and Izzy Pacho’s parents were recognized throughout the first pitch and after the game for the contributions they have made to the program. 

Even though Arizona had been heavily leaning on her all weekend, the Wildcats sent Netz out to start the last game of the season. She faced Cal’s Archer, who was starting her second game in the series

Cal, like they did in the two previous games, started the game off with a run in the first inning. Arizona answered in the bottom of the inning with a run of their own after a key hit from Carlie Scupin

Arizona scored 2 more runs in the bottom of the second inning after a deep single from Dakota Kennedy and a Scupin RBI. The Wildcats really came alive in the bottom of the third inning, though. After another deep single from Wildcat shortstop Logan Cole, Arizona scored 2 more runs and added to their growing lead. Then, with two runners on, Kennedy hit a 3-run homer to center field. Immediately after Kennedy’s home run, Scupin took the first pitch she was thrown and hit a home run to right field, extending the Wildcats’ lead to 9-1

The Cal offense tried to match the scoring the Wildcats put up, but they fell short and only put up 3 more runs all game

Arizona won their last game of the season 9-4 on senior day. Netz had a big weekend. On top of pitching a complete game by throwing 103 pitches and striking out six Cal players in Sunday’s game, Netz also pitched a total of 14.2 innings on the weekend. She threw 195 pitches and struck out 11 batters in the series

Looking ahead

Arizona will host the first ever Pac-12 softball tournament at Rita Hillenbrand Memorial Stadium starting on Wednesday, May 10. Arizona and ASU will face off in a play-in game on Wednesday to see who will move on to the first round against UCLA on Thursday, May 11

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