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The Daily Wildcat

 

Arizona softball falls in the semifinals in the Pac-12 Tournament

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Mason Kumet
Tayler Biehl rounds third after giving Arizona the lead against ASU with a three run homerun on April 21 at Rita Hillenbrad Stadium. ASU woud reclaim the lead before Arizona hit a walkoff single to win the game.

The No. 18 Arizona softball team played two games in the 2024 Pac-12 softball tournament at the Smith Family Field in Stanford, Calif., before falling in the semifinals. The first game was against the No. 12 University of Washington on Thursday, May 9, which they run-ruled and advanced, winning 11-3. In the second game, the Wildcats faced No. 6 UCLA but fell just one run short, losing 6-5 in the semifinals.

Quarterfinal: Thursday, May 9

Game 1: No. 18 Arizona vs. No. 12 Washington at 6:30 p.m.

In a quarterfinal upset, the No. 5 seed Wildcats knocked off the No. 4 seed Huskies by a score of 11-3. Arizona wasted no time getting on the board, scoring two runs in the top of the first. Pac-12 Scholar-Athlete of the Year, Allie Skaggs got the scoring started with an RBI single, and Olivia DiNardo followed with a run-scoring double.  

The Wildcats kept the momentum and went on to score two more runs in the second inning. Freshman Regan Shockey grounded out to second base for the RBI, bringing Tayler Biehl home. This was followed by an RBI double by Carlie Scupin, scoring Dakota Kennedy and giving Arizona a 4-0 lead. 

In the top of the fourth inning, Kaiah Altmeyer pushed Arizona’s lead to 5-0 with a sacrifice groundout. The Huskies were able to get back in the action as they rallied in the bottom of the fourth with back-to-back home runs, cutting Arizona’s lead to 5-3.

To conclude the game, DiNardo launched a 2-run homer in the fifth, after a double by Skaggs, extending their lead to 7-3. The sixth inning saw Arizona explode for 4 more runs, with RBIs from Shockey, Skaggs and DiNardo again, pushing the score to a comfortable 11-3 lead and clinching a spot in the semifinals. 

Miranda Stoddard started strong with two scoreless innings, followed by Brooke Mannon coming in to relieve, allowing a 2-run homer in the fourth inning. Aissa Silva came on the mound to relieve and shut down Washington for the final three innings, allowing only one run

Semifinal: Friday, May 10

Game 1: No. 18 Arizona vs. No. 6 UCLA at 7:30 p.m.

Arizona’s Pac-12 Tournament run ended in a narrow 6-5 defeat to No. 1 seed UCLA in the semifinals. The Wildcats put up a solid fight, piecing together seven hits, including two home runs and a great pitching effort from Mannon, who started the first two innings and re-entered in the fifth. 

Both teams were quiet in the first two innings, but not for long, as the Wildcats scored four runs in the third inning after a 3-run homer by Scupin and a sac fly by Blaise Biringer. Two innings later, the Arizona lead would disappear after the Bruins scored 6 runs in the bottom of the fifth.  A pair of singles, a two-run homer and a bases-loaded walk gave UCLA a 6-4 lead

In the top of the sixth, Dinardo showed up again for the Wildcats, homering to center field to cut the Arizona deficit down to one run, but it wasn’t enough as the Bruins defeated the Wildcats 6-5. 

Looking ahead: 

Arizona will await its fate for NCAA Regionals on Selection Sunday. The selection show will take place on Sunday, May 12th, at 7:00 PM ET on ESPN2. Regional play kicks off later that week on May 16th, leading up to the Women’s College World Series starting May 30th in Oklahoma City.


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