UA softball completes unbeaten tourney run
TUCSON, Ariz. – The 17th-ranked Arizona softball team concluded the Wildcat Invitational with an 8-1 victory over Portland State (5-15) to finish the event a perfect 5-0 and improve to 15-5 on the season.
Arizona outscored its opponents 42-10 in the tournament; more than half of those runs (22) were scored in the first two innings of games.
UA scored in the first inning in every game of the Wildcat Invitational after scoring in the first inning in just three of its first 15 games.
On Sunday, Arizona scored eight runs on seven hits, three off the bat of Chelsea Goodacre. It was the second time this weekend the sophomore recorded a three-hit game; Goodacre had just one career three-hit game entering the tournament. Goodacre hit a ridiculous .769 (10-for-13) in the event with a double, a home run and nine RBIs.
Alex Lavine had two of Arizona’s seven hits, one of which brought home two runs. Lavine was one of three Wildcats with multiple runs batted in during the contest; Brigette Del Ponte and Mandie Perez drove in two each as well.
Shelby Babcock earned the complete game victory in the circle for the Cats. Babcock allowed just one run on six hits and walked four batters while striking out two. The junior improved to 8-2 on the year.
There were 19 runners stranded in the game, 10 by Arizona. UA left the bases full in the first and fifth innings.
Babcock surrendered a double to the first batter she faced, Carly McEachran in the first inning. After a passed ball and a sacrifice fly, the Vikings had a 1-0 lead two batters into the game.
Arizona would respond, however, three batters into its at-bat in the bottom of the first. Hallie Wilson singled, Chelsea Suitos took her place at first by grounding into a fielder’s choice and Del Ponte hit her home with a go-ahead two-run shot to left field. It was Del Ponte’s fourth homer of the season.
The Cats were not done in the first. A single and two walks loaded the bases. Mandie Perez was hit by a pitch to bring home a run and Arizona led 3-1 after one.
For the second consecutive inning, Arizona batted around in the second inning. Wilson walked and Suitos reached on an error to put two on for Goodacre. The sophomore singled Wilson home. Suitos would then score on Kelsey Rodriguez’s sacrifice fly. The next three batters walked, including Perez, who drew her second RBI free pass in two innings to give Arizona a 6-1 lead. Lavine singled with the bases loaded to score two runs and extend the lead to 8-1.
Portland State put runners on in every remaining inning, including two in the third, fourth, fifth and sixth innings, but could not score.