#11 UW 11, #9 Arizona 7

SEATTLE - Hooch Fagaly hit a game winning grand slam with one out in the bottom of the seventh inning to give 11th ranked Washington a dramatic come from behind 11-7 victory over ninth ranked Arizona in the opener of a three game Pac-12 series at Husky Softball Stadium on a rainy Friday night.

An overflow standing room only crowd of 1,445 saw the Huskies (29-12, 9-8 Pac-12 and Arizona (39-10, 12-7) combine to mash five home runs with the home team going deep three times and the visitors twice.

With the game tied at 7 going into the last of the seventh, Kenzie Fowler (8-5) pitched herself into a huge jam. She walked Dani Braun to lead off the inning. Kelli Suguro grounded into a fielder's choice for one out, but Fowler then walked Jennie McNeill and Victoria Hayward to load the bases and bring Fagaly to the plate.

Fagaly took ball one, called strike one, then ball two before fouling the next pitch off the screen on top of the Arizona dugout for strike two. She then smacked the next pitch into the center field bleachers for her fifth homer of the season and second game winner in her last two home games.

She previously hit a solo shot to beat Arizona State 3-2 on April 18. For the game Fagaly finished 2 for 2 with three runs scored and four runs batted in. She also walked three times to reach base in all five of her plate appearances.

The Wildcats came into the game with a team batting average of .365, 92 home runs, and 388 runs scored (8.1 per game) and seemed to begin the game on their season long pace, scoring three runs in the top of the first, all with two outs, against Kaitlin Inglesby.

Kellie Fox and Chelsea Goodacre got hit by a pitch. The runners moved up a base on a passed ball, and Katiyana Mauga made it 1-0 with a line single to center. Mo Mercado then hit a sinking liner to right that bounced in front of right fielder Marki Creger Zier for a single to score Goodacre, and when the ball got away for an error, Mauga scored from first for 3-0.

In the bottom of the first Fagaly reached base on a one out single when Kaitlin Inglesby grounded into an apparent inning ending double play on a 1-0 pitch, but the umpire called Arizona starter Estela Pinon for an illegal pitch, making the count 2-0 and awarding Fagaly second. Inglesby then walked to put Huskies at first and second. Kylee Lahners then lined a double into the gap in right center field to score Fagaly. Inglesby also attempted to score on the play, but got nailed at the plate a perfect relay throw from Fox and a terrific block by catcher Goodacre.

With the score 3-1 going into the bottom of the second Whitney Jones brought the Huskies a run closer with her third home run of the season, over the bleachers in right center field.

Washington tied it in the bottom of the third. Fagaly led off with a walk. Ryllleigh Zbaraschuk pinch ran for Fagaly and took second on a single by Inglesby. After Lahners popped up to the catcher, Ali Aguilar lined a double over the head of Chelsea Suitos to score Zbaraschuk.

The Huskies had a chance to get more when Dani Braun lined a 1-2 pitch down the line that would have gone for extra bases but Suitos made a terrific diving catch to save two runs.

Arizona then reclaimed the lead, scoring three runs in the top of the fourth to go up 6-3. With one out Hallie Wilson bunted for a base hit and took second on a sacrifice by Kelsey Rodriguez. Fox then lined a 2-2 pitch over the head of center fielder Victoria Hayward and into the bleachers for a ground rule double, scoring Wilson for 4-3. Goodacre then came up and pulled a 1-2 pitch well over the bleachers in right field for her team leading 21st home run of the season and a 6-3 lead.

Back came the Huskies in the bottom of the fifth, scoring four runs to take a 7-6 lead. Fagaly led off with a walk. Inglesby fouled out and Lahners hit a liner that Suitos looked like she would catch at the wall in left, but she dropped it for a huge error, giving the Huskies two baserunners. A wild pitch allowed them to move up a base. Then Aguilar drove a 1-2 pitch over the 220 marker in center field for a three run homer, her fifth of the season, and a 6-6 tie. Jones then walked on four pitches and scored the go ahead run for 7-6 on an opposite field double to left center by Suguro.

The Wildcats then took their turn coming from behind, tying the game at 7 on a leadoff homer off the center field scoreboard by Hallie Wilson, her 13th of the season.

In the circle, neither starting pitcher factored into the decision. For the Huskies, Inglesby went five innings, allowing six runs, four earned, on six hits. She walked four and struck out eight. For Arizona, Pinon ended up with four and a third innings, allowing six runs, five earned, on six hits. She walked three and struck out three.

Bryana Walker (16-7) got the win, going two innings, allowing one run on the Wilson homer. She gave up three hits while walking one and striking out two.

Fowler took the loss, giving up five runs, all earned, in only two innings. She finished with two hits allowed, seven walks and three strikeouts.

The two teams play Game 2 of the series at Husky Softball Stadium on Saturday at 7 p.m. Prior to the game, Husky legend Danielle Lawrie will become the first Husky softballer to have her jersey retired.

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