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Arizona softball: Tamara Statman has 3 RBIs as Wildcats beat No. 14 Utah, 5-1

Make that 26 wins in a row for the Wildcats

Tamara Statman
Photo by Jason Bartel

Tamara Statman drove in three runs and Mandie Perez knocked in two as the Arizona softball team beat No. 14 Utah 5-1 on Thursday in Salt Lake City in the first game of a three-game series.

It’s the 26th win in a row for the second-ranked Wildcats, who improve to 41-1 on the season and 13-0 in Pac-12 play.

Statman was 2-for-3 with an RBI triple and a two-run double, while Perez was 1-for-4 with a two-run double.

Danielle O’Toole (22-1) went the distance for the Wildcats, allowing one run on five hits with seven strikeouts and one walk.

After surrendering a lead-off single in the bottom of the first, O’Toole did not allow another hit until the bottom of the fifth (though two Utes did reach on errors).

In the seventh, Utah finally got on the board on an RBI double by Kelly Martinez, but O’Toole limited the damage there, getting a strikeout to strand two runners.

It’s the 18th complete game for O’Toole, whose ERA rose to 0.77.

Katie Donovan (13-7) started for the Utes, but lasted only four innings, allowing five runs, seven hits, and three walks.

She was relieved by Hailey Hilburn, who pitched three scoreless innings.

Jessie Harper scored the game’s first run on Statman’s triple in the top of the second.

Statman hit a line drive up the middle and it rolled all the way to wall as Utah’s center fielder was shaded toward left field. Harper scored from first.

Statman then drove in Mo Mercado and pinch-runner Eva Watson in the top of the fourth with a double to right center.

Statman and Reyna Carranco would score later in the inning on a double by Perez to put UA up 5-0.

Arizona’s 7-8-9 hitters of Statman, Carranco, and Ashleigh Hughes were 5-for-7 with three RBIs and two walks.

The Wildcats’ 2-3-4 hitters were 0-for-9. Arizona tallied seven hits and seven walks and was 4-for-10 with runners in scoring position.

Hughes had two hits, while Carranco walked twice. Mercado was 1-for-3 with a double and a walk.

Both teams left six runners on base.

The second game of the series is set for Friday at 3 p.m. PST. It will be televised on the Pac-12 Networks.

Taylor McQuillin (13-0, 0.66 ERA) will likely start for the Wildcats. McQuillin has tossed 21 scoreless innings in a row.

You can follow this author on Twitter at @RKelapire