Feb. 21, 2014
CATHEDRAL CITY, Calif. -The Fresno State softball team (8-3) opened action in the Mary Nutter Collegiate Classic with an 8-0 loss to No. 14 Arizona (11-1) Friday evening at Big League Dreams Park.
The returning Super Regional advancer Wildcats bounced back from a loss on Thursday with two runs in both the first and third innings and four more in the fifth inning in the five-inning decision.
Three Bulldogs hit safely - senior shortstop Brooke Ortiz (1-for-3), freshman left fielder Kierra Willis (1-for-2) and sophomore second baseman Whitney Smith (1-for-1, walk) - while junior right fielder Michelle Solomon also reached via a walk.
Smith's hit was a fifth-inning double - her team-leading second two-bagger of the year. Later in the inning, Smith nearly accounted for the `Dogs' first run but was thrown out at home on a grounder to the shortstop.
The `Dogs also had two runners on in the second inning on a Willis single and Smith walk but a ground-out ended the inning.
UA scored its first two runs in the top of the first inning on a pair of bases-loaded walks set up by two walks and a hit batter.
In the third inning, the `Cats scored on a single, RBI triple smashed down the left field line that caromed off the left field foul wall, and another hard-hit RBI single to third base.
In the fifth inning, a walk and infield error on a sacrifice bunt was followed by a RBI single and 2-run double to left field. Two batters later, a sacrifice fly sealed the `Cats' fourth win this year in less than seven innings.
Fresno State starter Jill Compton (4-2) pitched the first three innings, struck out two, walked three, gave up three hits, and three of her four runs allowed were earned.
In her MW-leading seventh relief appearance of the year, sophomore Taylor Langdon worked the final two innings, walked two, struck out none, allowed three hits, and two of her four runs allowed were earned.
Arizona starter Michelle Floyd (2-0) pitched the first 4.0 innings, struck out two, walked two, and gave up two hits.
The `Cats' Shelby Babcock pitched the final inning, struck out one, and allowed one hit.
In the team comparison, UA held edges in hits (7-3), walks (5-2) and batters struck out (3-2).
Looking ahead, the `Dogs will face No. 25 Texas (7-8) and Virginia (2-8) on Saturday at 9:30 a.m. and noon, and LIU Brooklyn and No. 2 Tennessee on Sunday at 11:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., respectively.
"Catch the Wave!" - Follow Fresno State softball on Twitter at the *NEW* @FresnoStateSB address.
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