The second game of the Arizona-Washington softball series has been suspended in the sixth inning due to heavy rain in the Seattle area.
The teams were trying to restart at 8:15 p.m. PT after a near-three-hour delay, but the umpires and coaches determined to resume at 11 a.m. on Sunday instead. The third and final game of the series will begin 30 minutes after that game concludes. (The series was supposed to be a four-game set with a Saturday doubleheader, but that’s off the table now.)
Arizona softball shuffled its lineup Saturday in search of some offense but the result was the same. The Wildcats, who lost 2-1 on Friday, were trailing 2-1 in the bottom of the sixth before the downpour.
Washington ace Gabbie Plain stymied the Wildcats again. After logging 16 strikeouts in Friday’s win, she fanned eight Wildcats on Saturday in six innings of work. The righty threw 17 first-pitch strikes to 26 batters.
Arizona actually had several scoring opportunities but continues to struggle getting the big hit. The Wildcats stranded a runner in scoring position in the first, third, fourth and sixth innings.
Washington came up clutch in the fourth when Morganne Flores banged a two-out, two-run double off the left field wall, the only damage done against Alyssa Denham.
Trying to ignite an offense that has now scored five runs in its last five games, head coach Mike Candrea made these changes to Arizona’s batting order:
- Alyssa Palomino-Cardoza dropped from second to seventh
- Sharlize Palacios was bumped from fifth to second
- Dejah Mulipola and Jessie Harper were swapped to the No. 3 and 4 spots, respectively
- Carlie Scupin was upped from seventh to fifth.
- Peanut Martinez started in right field and batted ninth instead of Bella Dayton
Arizona halved the deficit in the sixth when Washington first baseman Kelley Lynch failed to back hand a sharp grounder off the bat of Dayton, who pinch hit. The ball rolled toward the middle of the infield and Mulipola scampered home from second after singling earlier in the inning.
Palomino-Cardoza coaxed a walk to put the tying run on second and go-ahead run on first, but Hanah Bowen grounded out to Plain to end the frame.
Then came the rain.
Like a G
Freshman first baseman Giulia Koutsoyanopulos made a stellar diving play in the fifth, snaring a line drive and lunging back to the bag to double off the runner at first. (The announcers gave Scupin the credit, but it was indeed Koutsoyanopulos.)
What a play by Giulia at first!
— Arizona Softball (@ArizonaSoftball) March 21, 2021
It likely saved a run as that ball may have rattled around in the corner if not for Koutsoyanopulos’ glovework.
How Arizona killed time during the delay
Thanks to the official UA softball Twitter account, we got an inside look at how the Wildcats spent the rain delay. Lots of hacky sack and…outfielder Peanut Martinez throwing nasty off-speed pitches? Yep.