Arizona Softball

Arizona dominates San Diego and Georgetown in doubleheader, goes undefeated in Bear Down Fiesta

Dakota Kennedy hit a game-winning grand slam against San Diego, and a game-winning RBI single against Georgetown in the doubleheader at Hillenbrand Stadium Saturday. (Stephanie van Latum / All Sports Tucson)

Two game-winning hits by Dakota Kennedy helped No. 20 Arizona pick up where they left off the day before in the Bear Down Fiesta, handily defeating San Diego and Georgetown in run-rules on Saturday afternoon at Hillenbrand Stadium.

The Wildcats beat Georgetown 15-7 and San Diego 6-0, on Friday.

The situational hitting the Wildcats worked on in practice this week paid off.

“Our team did a great job this week with situational hitting,” Kennedy said. “I think that just showed in the way that we played this entire weekend. Just getting things done, moving runners, and just putting ourselves in the best position to win.”

In game one of the doubleheader on Saturday, Arizona had no trouble putting away San Diego for the second time in as many days

After going up 6-0 in the bottom of the fifth inning, Kennedy finished off San Diego (14-21-1) with a grand slam over the left field that put the Wildcats up 10-0, eliminating the Gauchos by run-rule.

“Just base hit. That’s literally the only thing that was going through my head was getting a base hit and it just happened to go over,” Kennedy said.

Devyn Netz had a one-hitter against San Diego on Saturday, logging back-to-back shutouts against the Gauchos, including her performance on Friday.

She finished the Bear Down Fiesta with 14 strikeouts, allowing only four hits. Her 11 strikeouts on Friday were a career-high.

“(I was) moving the ball around a lot, making sure I’m not staying one place too long. So like I said, I touched on sequences, and that’s a big part of the game is knowing when you throw a certain pitch, it honestly leads into the next pitch.”

Devyn Netz pitched a shutout against San Diego on Saturday afternoon at Hillenbrand Stadium, allowing only one hit in five innings. (Stephanie van Latum / All Sports Tucson)

After a 1-2-3 first inning from the circle, Netz hit an RBI single, scoring Jasmine Perezchica in the bottom of the first. Later in the inning, Blaise Biringer hit a 2-RBI double that scored Netz and Dakota Kennedy, to put the Cats up 3-0. 

Netz (11-9), who finished with three strikeouts, gave up her only hit in the top of the fourth inning.

Arizona added to its 3-0 lead with the bases loaded in the bottom of the fifth inning when Allie Skaggs singled to center field, scoring pinch runner Logan Cole. Netz followed Skaggs with an RBI single to left field, scoring Paige DimlerOlivia DiNardo added to the Wildcats’ lead by singling to center field and scoring Perezchica to extend the lead to 6-0.

Arizona kept it rolling in game two of the doubleheader against Georgetown.

With the bases loaded in the bottom of the second, Tayler Biehl singled to center field, scoring DiNardo to put the Wildcats up 1-0. Sophia Carroll then flied out to right field, scoring Kennedy. The Wildcats extended the lead to 3-0 when Perzchica singled through the middle to bring Biringer home. 

But Arizona starting pitcher Ali Blanchard allowed the Hoyas to get back into the game in the top of the third. 

After Claire Turner singled, Blanchard walked Cameron KondoMorgan Zamora then hit a three-run homer over the left field wall to even the score at 3-3.

Arizona got out of the inning with Blanchard striking out Mae Forshey, and a groundout by Kayla Dunn.

DiNardo singled to center field to open the bottom of the third inning for Arizona. Kennedy followed her with a single on a bunt to the pitcher that moved DiNardo to second. A sacrifice bunt from Biringer advanced both runners. A sac fly by Biehl brought pinch runner Blanchard home to put the Wildcats up 4-3.

Two consecutive RBI doubles from Carroll and Dimler extended Arizona’s lead to 6-3 heading into the fourth inning.

In the bottom of the fourth, the floodgates opened for Arizona at the plate.

Skaggs hit a solo homer that soared well over the block “A” logo in center field to lead off the bottom half of the inning and put the Wildcats up 7-3.

Allie Skaggs went a combined 2-for-5 on Saturday, with a solo home run. (Stephanie van Latum / All Sports Tucson)

Netz got on base with a single to center field before DiNardo crushed a two-run home run over the right field wall that extended the lead to 9-3. After Kennedy singled to center field and stole second, Biringer hit an RBI double that put Arizona up 10-3.

Biringer would score on a flyout from Dimler, and The Wildcats closed out the fourth inning up 11-3.

With the game seemingly out of reach, Georgetown (8-23) didn’t throw in the towel.

An RBI single from Forshey narrowed the gap to 11-4 in the top of the fifth.

But in the bottom of the fifth, Kennedy ended the game at the plate like she did earlier in the day against San Diego in game one of the doubleheader.

This time she stamped out any hope Georgetown had by hitting a game-winning RBI single, scoring Skaggs, who walked to get on base earlier in the inning to run-rule the Hoyas 12-4.

“I was just thinking that the pressure’s on the defense at this point. There’s no pressure on me, Kennedy said. “I think the most outs that I had when I was up to bat in that situation was only one, so I knew if I didn’t do it, my team always has my back and they’d do it.”

Blanchard (6-1) allowed four hits, and had four strikeouts in the win.

For Arizona head coach Caitlin Lowe, the success the Wildcats had getting base hits in the Bear Down Fiesta comes down to the Wildcats grasping the value of situational hitting they have worked on of late.

“I think that’s when hitting becomes contagious because you’re not going to launch 10 home runs in a row. That’s just not going to happen,” she said. “So when they’re hitting the ball, you know, seeing the ball into their zone and hitting it hard. Then when they pass the bat. It’s like, ‘okay, this is what I saw. This is what I did,’ and it’s contagious versus one home run every few innings.

“We don’t like to live that way.They like to kind of catch fire.”

Arizona (24-12, 3-6) next plays at Stanford (28-4, 5-2) next Thursday at 6 p.m. Tucson time.

FOLLOW @KEVINMURFEE ON TWITTER! writer Kevin Murphy was born and raised in Tucson, and has followed Arizona Wildcats athletics since childhood. Murphy is a journalist product manager with the Green Valley News & the Sahuarita Sun. He has a bachelor’s degree from the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at ASU.


Print Friendly, PDF & Email
To Top