Coming into Friday night’s game against No. 6 Washington, Arizona looked to get back to its winning ways after dropping a three-game series to Florida State.
The Wildcats had pitcher Mariah Lopez in the circle, who was named Pac-12 Pitcher of the week, looking to get the team’s offense some help. Although Lopez set her team up for success, two early runs and a sloppy offensive approach came back to haunt Arizona in a 2-1 loss to the Huskies.
— Washington Softball (@UWSoftball) March 20, 2021
Washington pitcher Gabbie Plain was spectacular against Arizona, dominating the Wildcats power lineup striking out 16 on 101 pitches. The strikeout total was a new career-high for Plain during her three-year career with the Huskies.
Arizona didn’t record its first hit until the top of the fifth inning when catcher Dejah Mulipola hit a home run to get the Wildcats on the board.
— Arizona Softball (@ArizonaSoftball) March 20, 2021
Lopez gave her team every opportunity to get back in the game with the offense struggling, shutting out the Huskies from the third inning on. In fact, she only gave up one earned run, with the first run of the game coming from an error committed by the infield.
Arizona not only struggled to score runs, but it also struggled to get any kind of early-inning momentum seeing its lead-off hitters go 1-for-7 and unable to create any sort of spark.
Here’s what coach Mike Candrea had to say during the weekly press conference talking about his struggling offense:
Things won’t get easier for Arizona as it now has to play a doubleheader against Washington on Saturday due to the new schedule format released by the Pac-12 to combat potential missed games in this COVID-19 era athletic events.
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ALLSPORTSTUCSON.com writer Troy Hutchison hails from Tucson and is a lifelong Arizona Wildcats follower. He has been involved in sports journalism over the last two years while taking communications courses at Pima Community College.