No. 2 Arizona was looking to get its first Top 25 win of the season Thursday facing No. 16 Florida State in the first game of a three-game series to finish the Wildcats’ seven-game road trip in Florida.
The Wildcats had pitcher Alyssa Denham in the circle looking for a solid performance to help the team to victory. That didn’t happen as Denham couldn’t record an out, giving up three runs in the first.
The Seminoles took advantage of the first inning and went on to win 4-2. Arizona is 13-2 with a 3-2 record on the seven-game road trip with two more games left against the Seminoles.
Florida State defeats No. 2 Arizona 4-2! pic.twitter.com/tUHlaMasnp
— Florida State Softball 🥎 (@FSU_Softball) March 12, 2021
After Denham’s struggles, Mike Candrea turned to junior pitcher Hanah Bowen to clean up the first-inning jam, and she was able to do so by getting a double play. Bowen pitched a masterpiece going six innings on 89 pitches with six strikeouts while giving up three hits and one earned run.
Arizona could only muster two runs on seven hits and surprisingly left just two runners on base. The Wildcats didn’t get much from the bottom of the order, with batters six through nine going 1-for-10 with a run.
Arizona went 3-for-4 with runners in scoring position and had a better batting average than Florida State.
A baserunning mistake by Jessie Harper was costly as she was thrown out at the plate in the first inning.
In the third inning, Harper had an infield single that almost got into center field but shortstop Josie Muffley made a diving stop and threw out Janelle Meoño, who saw the play late and tried to get back to the base.
Arizona will look to even the series on Friday at 4 p.m. Tucson time.
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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.