Hooch Fagaly digs the long ball, especially late in a game.
In a back-and-forth game filled with momentum shifts, the senior first baseman finally brought it to an abrupt end by slugging her second walkoff home run of the season to give 11th-ranked Washington an 11-7 win Friday night over ninth-ranked Arizona in front of 1,445 at Husky Softball Stadium.
Fagaly hit a walkoff home run against Arizona State last month. Did Friday’s big blast, to straightaway center on a 2-2 count, supersede that memory?
“Oh, I think that one’s up there, too,” said a smiling Fagaly, moments after she had wiped away a celebratory yogurt pie from her teammates.
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The win gives the Huskies (29-12, 9-8 and fifth place in the Pac-12) their first five-game winning streak since early March. Arizona (39-10, 12-7 and fourth place) entered the game as the nation’s leader in home runs, runs scored, batting average and slugging percentage but got out-homered by UW, 3-2.
UW freshman Ali Aguilar had a three-run homer in the fifth, and Whitney Jones had a solo blast in the second.
“This team is so capable of being able to hit the ball out of the park,” UW coach Heather Tarr said.
Momentum swung often. Arizona went up 3-0 in its first at-bat, but Washington evened it at 3-3 by the third. A three-run homer in the fourth by Chelsea Goodacre, her 21st, put the Wildcats back on top, 6-3.
UW responded with the three-run homer by Aguilar and a run-scoring double by junior Kelli Suguro to take its first lead, 7-6, in the fifth. Yet in the sixth, a moonshot to center by Arizona’s Hallie Wilson off UW reliever Bryana Walker tied it again.
Washington left the bases loaded in the bottom of the sixth after reliever Kenzie Fowler issued three walks.
Fowler again walked the bases full in the seventh. With one out, Fagaly just wanted to hit the ball deep.
“She was busting me inside every pitch,” she said. “I was just looking for something to get to the outfield, it just happened to be a good pitch and it went over (the wall). I thought, ‘Cool; sac fly. Oh, it might carry. OK, bonus!’ ”
• Danielle Lawrie, who pitched UW to the 2009 national championship and earned two national player of the year awards, will have her jersey retired in a ceremony before Saturday’s 7 p.m. game.
• The two teams meet again Sunday at noon.