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#2 UCLA Softball Visits #3 Oregon This Weekend
After a run-rule win over the Sun Devils and eight canceled games, UCLA is back at it this weekend.
After the #2 UCLA softball team completed a four-game sweep of the Arizona State Sun Devils three weeks ago, the Bruins had eight games cancelled due to COVID-19 issues on the UCLA softball team. The Bruins are finally ready to return to action this evening when they visit the #3 Oregon Ducks. First pitch for tonight’s game is set for 5:00 pm PT and the game will be televised by Pac-12 Networks.
Last Time Out
Bubba Nickles got things rolling in the final game against the Sun Devils with a double down the right field line. Briana Perez singled and stretched it into a double, but Nickles was tagged out at home. Rachel Garcia and Delanie Wisz both walked to load the bases. That brought up Maya Brady who homered over the left field wall for a grand slam. After only one inning, UCLA was up 4-0.
Arizona State was still unable to get on the board at the top of the second. UCLA was able to add one more when Kinsley Washington singled to start the inning and, then, stole second. Washington moved to third on a groundout by Kelli Godin and came home on another double by Nickles. The score was now 5-0, Bruins.
In the bottom of the third, ASU made several changes on defense to stop the bleeding, but Garcia added another with a solo shot to left center. That would be the only run of the inning, making the score 6-0, UCLA.
In the bottom of the fourth, the Bruins tacked on three runs to seal the deal. Godin was up first and was able to single and also steal second base. Aaliyah Jordan nailed a long single to right field, scoring Godin, and Seneca Curo was brought in to pinch run. After both Thessa Malau’ulu and Wisz were walked, the bases were loaded and three scored on a single by Brady. The 9-0 score at the end of the fourth would not change as ASU was unable to get any runs on the board at the top of the fifth, resulting in a run-rule win for UCLA.
This weekend is a dangerous one for UCLA. The Ducks are the only team which has managed to beat the Bruins so far this season. They did this in Arizona in February.
But it also presents an opportunity. UCLA is one of just two teams to have beaten the Ducks because the teams split the two games they played that weekend. If UCLA can manage to win this weekend’s series, they will solidify their #2 ranking and, maybe even have a claim to the top spot. Though, it might take a sweep to knock unbeaten Oklahoma from that perch.
There’s no doubt that this is going to be a tough weekend series for both teams. Whichever team can score more runs will prevail. That essentially means that as long as UCLA can generate enough runs, they should take the series as Bruin pitchers held the Ducks to three runs in both of their February contests. The difference there was that UCLA was held to just one run in the first game and they exploded for nine runs in the second meeting.
UCLA’s bats need to make a big statement starting tonight. Tonight’s prediction: 6-3, Bruins
#2 UCLA Softball (19-1, 3-0)
Opponent: Oregon Ducks
When: 5:00 pm PT, Friday, April 9, 2021
Where: Jane Sanders Stadium, Eugene, OR
TV: Pac-12 Networks National, Los Angeles and Oregon
Live Stream: Pac-12.com and the Pac-12 Now app
Live Stats: UCLA StatBroadcast