#6 Softball Rallies From A Two-Run Deficit To Beat No. 4 Arizona State, 5-2

May 10, 2002

SEATTLE - Jaime Clark's RBI double allowed three runs to score, as the sixth-ranked Washington softball team rallied to defeat fourth-ranked Arizona State, 5-2, Friday at Husky Softball Stadium. The UW, which was down by two runs until a four-run, fourth inning, moved to 42-16 overall and 11-8 in the Pac-10, while the Sun Devils fell to 40-16 overall and 10-9 in conference play.

Arizona State jumped into the early lead, 1-0, in the first inning. Lead-off batter Missy Hixon drew a lead-off walk before moving to second on a one-out single off the bat of shortstop Kara Brun. Hixon then scored when the next batter, third baseman Phelan Wright, scorched a hard shot through the right side.

The Sun Devils added to their lead in the third inning, following another lead-off walk, this time to Nichole Thompson, who came in from second on a two-out single down the left field line by first baseman Erin Wardein.

The Huskies, meanwhile, left two runners stranded in each of the first three innings before finally pushing across some runs in the fourth. Sophomore Courtney Jeffries (Eugene, Ore.) started the rally by reaching base on a fielding error by Wardein. Jeffries then moved to second when sophomore Megan Owen (Spokane, Wash.) beat out a ground ball to shortstop all with no outs. Arizona State relief pitcher Blair Holck, who had entered in relief of starter Erica Beach, then walked UW freshman Steph Nicholson (Tucson, Ariz.) to load the bases.

Beach replaced Holck, but Husky centerfielder Rita Roach (Norwalk, Wash.) still knocked in the first run with a single to centerfield, scoring Jeffries. With the bases still loaded, Clark reached out to get Beach's 1-2 outside pitch, knocking it to right field as both Owen and Nicholson came around to score.

On the same play, Arizona State attempted to tag out Clark at second, which only gave time for Roach to also score for the 4-2 Husky advantage.

Washington added on another run in the bottom of the sixth when Clark drove a line drive to straight-away center field, barely missing the home run. The ball bounced off of the wall away from the ASU outfielders, allowing Clark to motor all the way to third base. The play appeared to be over, but the Sun Devils failed to call timeout as Clark stole home for the 5-2 lead.

Washington pitcher Ashley Boek (Redding, Calif.), who entered in relief of starter Tia Bollinger (Santa Ana, Calif.) in the fifth inning, kept the Sun Devils off the basepaths for the final three innings, retiring the side in order with three strikeouts for her third save of the season. Bollinger, meanwhile, earned the win to move to 19-9 overall.

Washington will play host to second-ranked Arizona Saturday for a 1 p.m. doubleheader at Husky Softball Stadium in both teams' regular season finale.

Friday, May 10, 2002 -
#6 Washington vs. #4 Arizona State (Husky Softball Stadium)

Score By Innings R H E
ASU 1 0 1 0 0 0 0 2 4 1
UW 0 0 0 4 0 1 X 5 8 1

E - Wardein, Oleson LOB - UW 10, ASU 6
2B - Clark, Oleson 3B - Clark SB - Clark SH - Forner
WP - Tia Bollinger (19-9) LP - Blair Holck (0-1) SV - Ashley Boek (3)
(Bollinger, Boek (5) and Rivera; Beach, Holck (4), Swetel (4) and Garcia)

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