Arizona’s seventh-inning rally fell short as No. 4 Oklahoma held on for a 2-1 win Saturday in Palm Springs, California.
Former Arizona State Sun Devil G Juarez had a no-hitter going until Jessie Harper doubled with one out in the seventh. Dejah Mulipola then promptly singled up the middle to pull the Wildcats within one, but was thrown out trying to take an extra base.
Juarez, who transferred from ASU to Oklahoma in the offseason, fanned 11 Wildcats. Arizona did not put a runner on base until Mulipola drew a walk in the fifth.
Oklahoma’s lone runs came via a two-run homer by Sydney Romero in the sixth. UA ace Taylor McQuillin (3-4) struck out five and only surrendered three hits. She retired 11 straight at one point.
Arizona (9-5) falls to 0-3 vs. top-10 teams this season.
Earlier in the day the Wildcats routed UC Santa Barbara, 9-1, in five innings. Freshman Marissa Schuld picked up her first career win, allowing one run on five hits in four innings. She struck out one. Fellow freshman Vanessa Foreman tossed a perfect inning in relief.
Arizona scored seven runs in the first inning, thanks to RBI hits by Mulipola, Ivy Davis, Hannah Martinez and Alyssa Palomino-Cardoza. The Wildcats also scratched runs off an error and wild pitch.
Tamara Statman then clubbed her second homer of the season in the second inning. Statman, Martinez and Palomino-Cardoza each had a pair of hits.
The Wildcats have not made an error through four games of the Mary Nutter Classic. Their first game — vs. Missouri — was rained out Thursday.
Arizona wraps up its stay in Palm Springs later Saturday with an exhibition against Team Japan, the No. 2 team in the world.