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Malia Martinez leads Arizona softball to series win in Texas - KVOA | KVOA.com | Tucson, Arizona

Malia Martinez leads Arizona softball to series win in Texas

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AUSTIN, Texas - Malia Martinez finished a triple shy of the cycle, going 4-for-4 with her first career homer and driving in five while Taylor McQuillin threw six two-hit innings and the Cats took game 3, 10-2 to take the three-game series at McCombs Field.

The early portion of the game featured pouring rain that resulted in a pair of delays, the latter of which lasted 48 minutes. But for the final five innings, the sun came out and brought UA's offense with it.

Arizona's offense was uncharacteristically absent in games one and two, scoring just three combined runs while splitting Friday and Saturday's games.

It was a different story on Sunday.

Arizona plated 10 runs on 10 hits, including a 4-for-4 day from Malia Martinez. Alyssa Palomino had a pair of doubles and Aleah Craighton had two hits as well for the Wildcats.

McQuillin, who did not pitch the seventh, denying her a shot at her sixth straight shutout, went six shutout innings allowing just two Longhorn hits. She has allowed two or fewer hits in each of her last 10 appearances. She has allowed just one run over her last 50.1 innings pitched (0.14 ERA), it came in a relief appearance vs. last week. She struck out nine in the victory. On the season, McQuillin improved to 11-1 while the Cats got to 15-2 in 2018.

The victory gave the Cats the series win over the Longhorns, who dropped to 8-10 on the season. It was the final road nonconference games of the season for UA, which hosts the Wildcat Invitational next week to wrap up the nonconference portion of its schedule.

Arizona opened the scoring with a two-run Malia Martinez home run in the top of the second on the second-to-last pitch prior to a 48-minute rain delay.

In the fourth, two walks sandwiched around an Aleah Craighton single loaded the bases with no one out to chaise Paige von Sprecken. Malia Martinez greeted reliever Brooke Bolinger with a two-run single. A wild pitch then extended the lead to 5-0.

Back-to-back two-out doubles from Alyssa Palomino and Craighton extended Arizona's lead in the fifth, 6-0.

Arizona scored four in the seventh and UT responded with two off of reliever Alyssa Denham.

Up next: Arizona returns home to host the Wildcat invitational March 8-11 at Hillenbrand Stadium. UA opens the event Thursday at 6 p.m. vs. South Dakota.

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