Arizona Softball

Scupin’s walk-off single leads Arizona to victory over Arizona State, series sweep

Carlie Scupin gets lifted in the air by her teammates after the game-winning hit on Sunday. (Arizona Athletics)

Carlie Scupin’s two-RBI walk-off single capped a rally in the bottom of the seventh inning, allowing No. 19 Arizona to defeat Arizona State 9-8 on Senior Day on Sunday and earn the series sweep and its third-straight conference series.

Arizona (31-13-1, 12-9 Pac-12) held a 6-4 lead heading into the top of the sixth. After Libby Walsh singled to center and Audrey LeClair doubled through the right side , Miranda Stoddard replaced Brooke Mannon in the circle.

Stoddard intentionally walked Kelsey Hall in favor of facing Sara Kinch. With a full count, Kinch hit a grand slam to center to give Arizona State (18-25, 2-16 Pac-12 )an 8-6 lead. 

The Wildcats loaded the bases in the bottom of the sixth with a single to shortstop from Regan Shockey and walks by Allie Skaggs and Blaise Birnger. Still, Arizona left all three runners stranded when Olivia DiNardo grounded out to close the inning.

Arizona was down to its final shot to tie or win in the bottom of the seventh when the Wildcats rallied.

Emily Schepp opened the bottom half by singling through the left side. With one out, Kaiah Altmeyer walked, and after Dakota Kennedy flew out to left field, Shockey’s two-out RBI single to second scored Schepp to narrow Arizona State’s lead to 8-7. This set up an instant classic line drive single by Scupin that brought Altmeyer and Shockey in for the 9-8 win. 

Scupin says she was forcing too much in her first three at-bats, and that she let the game-winning walk-off hit come to her.

“I think my first three at-bats, I was just getting a little carried away, just not really sticking to my plan,” she said. “Going up there for my last at-bat, I knew I owed it to the team to get myself a good at-bat and give us a chance to win the game. I just trusted the process, and it worked out.”

Arizona head coach Caitlin Lowe praised the lineup’s performance from the plate in the bottom of the seventh, which put Scupin in the position to hit the game-winner.

“We wanted to get the bat in her hand one more time,” Lowe said. “That moment is built from very many things leading up to it. Four years of her going hard on every play and her just giving and giving and giving to this program. Those moments are made for those people and she deserved that.”

Aissa Silva (20-4) allowed one earned run off six hits in 3 2/3 innings. Mannon started the game for Arizona, allowing two earned runs off three hits in three innings.

Arizona State got on board early to start the game.

In the top of the first, Tanya Windle’s two-out RBI single up the middle gave the Sun Devils a 1-0 lead.

DiNardo singled to right-center field to open the bottom of the second, and Schepp followed her by singling to left field. With one out, Altmeyer hit an RBI double to even the score at 1-1. Shockey then gave Arizona a 2-1 lead with a two-out RBI single to shortstop.

Kelsey Hall singled through the left side, and Sara Kinch reached base on a fielding error by Silva to open the top of the third. With two outs Alesia Denby hit a three-run home run over the left field fence to regain the lead for Arizona State at 4-2. Mannon then relieved Silva in the circle and recorded the final out.

Arizona got back on top in the bottom of the third after a single through the left side from Birninger and Schepp being hit by a pitch set up Tayler Biehl’s three-run home run to right field put the Wildcats up 5-4.

In the bottom of the fifth, DiNardo’s solo home run to center extended Arizona’s lead to 6-4. 


Arizona begins its final conference series of the season when it plays at No. 12 UCLA (26-9, 11-3) on Friday.

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.

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