Last season on March 24 against Oregon State Alyssa Denham pitched a no-hitter, the first of her collegiate career.
Most players only dream of the chance to being in that final inning with a chance at making history. It’s extremely rare that a player finds themselves in that situation not once, but twice. However, that’s what happened for Denham as she took a no-hitter into the seventh against Long Beach State.
She would finish off the no-hitter leading Arizona to a 6-0 victory over Long Beach State
After walking Long Beach State infielder Kyra Snyder in the second inning, Denham locked things up, sitting down 16-straight batters in order. Her only two baserunners were from a hit batter and a walk, after that there were no mistakes made.
On the offensive end, Arizona gave Denham early support scoring four runs in the first inning. All the runs were from either singles or errors that cost Long Beach State an extra run. The big hit of the inning came from Jessie Harper, who smacked a single in the center-right field gap, scoring two runs.
Still, as we’ve seen in the past nine-game, Arizona’s offense went dormant for an extended stretch of the game. It wasn’t until the fourth inning where they were able to string together a pair of hits to add on to its lead.
Later during the fifth inning catcher Sharlize Palacios, who has been battling her way back from a broken thumb, hit an opposite-field solo homer to give Arizona a 6-0 lead. It was the first career home run for Palacios wearing the block “A” on her jersey.
In the final inning with two outs, Denham mowed down the last batter striking her out in four pitches, sealing the no-hitter and the Arizona victory. Denham finished the game going seven innings of no-hit stuff along with seven strikeouts.
With Palacios behind the plate, she had a unique view of Denham’s no-hitter. It was the first no-hitter she had every caught in her softball career at any level.
Overall, it was a weekend of highs and lows for Arizona as it tries to find solutions for the issues that arose during the Hillenbrand Invitational.
Coach Candrea talked about those issues and how Arizona needs to find a way to be more consistent.