TEMPE — With already being down in the series and a sense of unease on the field with the injury to Alyssa Palomino-Cardoza, No. 8 Arizona came out flat Saturday in the first game of a doubleheader against No. 13 ASU at Farrington Stadium.
ASU took advantage of its opportunities and used its home run power throughout the lineup to beat the Wildcats 8-1. Mike Candrea‘s team is 26-7 overall, 6-4 in the Pac-12.
The second game of the doubleheader was Saturday night.
ASU (27-10, 8-6) won its first conference series against Arizona since 2015.
In the series opener Friday, Arizona lost 4-3 to ASU in a game that came down to the last play of the game with centerfielder Palomino-Cardoza grounding out to end the game with the bases loaded.
Game 2⃣ of this doubleheader coming up at 7:55p PT / 8:55p MT!
— Pac-12 Network (@Pac12Network) April 18, 2021
During the play, Palomino-Cardoza hurt her left knee and needed help off the field.
Arizona went with pitcher Mariah Lopez (6-2) to start the first game Saturday.
Lopez coming into the game struggled this season giving up the long bomb. It was more of the same for Lopez, who went four innings on 98 pitches, giving up five hits and six runs off three two-run home runs.
Arizona went with freshman pitcher Devyn Netz the rest of the way. Through two innings of work, Netz threw 44 pitches, giving up two hits and one two-run home run.
The single run scored for Arizona came in the third inning from a Jessie Harper hit.
The offense struggled to get any rhythm going, even with eight hits in the game. Of the eight hits, seven were singles, and Arizona left a total of nine runners on base. With runners in scoring position Arizona went 1-for-8.
The finale between Arizona and ASU on Sunday is a non-conference game. It starts at 1 p.m.
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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.