After a less than impressive start to the Hillenbrand Invitatational, Arizona looked to get things figured out against Bryant in the first of two games on Saturday.
In a surprising move, Arizona started Mariah Lopez against Bryant instead of going to a pitcher who hasn’t seen much action this season.
With Lopez pitching it opens the question, who will pitch in the second game against No. 2 Oklahoma. Will it be Alyssa Denham or will coach Candrea pitch Lopez in back-to-back games?
Arizona was unable to find much offense against Bryant in a close 3-1 win to improve to 8-0 on the season.
It seemed that Arizona’s offense had finally started to click when in the first inning three-runs scored. In the inning, Alyssa Palomino-Cardoza stayed hot at the plate when she blasted a two-run home run giving her five homers in eight games.
After giving up a run in the second inning, Lopez was unhittable, striking out batters left and right. She racked up 13 strikeouts through seven innings of work. It seemed like she got stronger as the game moved along.
The win sets up a highly anticipated matchup with No. 2 Oklahoma in what should be a playoff atmosphere type of showdown.