Behind the Score:
Hall's career-high strikeouts in her complete-game victory on Saturday
Number of multi-RBI games Yudin has had this season, with two this weekend
Point at which UCLA's win streak was snapped Sunday
Every game comes down to a few moments or instances in which the game is won.
A turning point can be considered anything that changes the expected outcome of a game, whether it be a home run to take the lead or an error that relinquishes one.
On its trip to Washington, UCLA softball had its moment. It was not just a turning point in the first game of the series that allowed UCLA to defeat No. 7 Washington 7-5; it was the turning point of the season, a moment in which the Bruins validated their belief that they are a championship-caliber team.
Trailing by five with nobody on base in the sixth, the No. 16 Bruins strung together seven runs, sending nine batters to the plate with two outs in the inning. The rally began with a two-out walk to senior catcher Dani Yudin. Freshman utility Ally Carda, who started the game at pitcher, followed with a two-run home run to cut the deficit to 5-2. Later, junior outfielder B.B. Bates’ RBI double pulled the Bruins ahead 6-5. Bates would go on to score on an error to make the score 7-5, and sophomore pitcher Jessica Hall sealed the come-from-behind victory by shutting out the Huskies in the final two frames.
“We all talked about it after. That two-out rally was a season-changer for us, and it kind of shows us that it comes down to the last batter, the last pitch with this offense,” Hall said of the Bruins. “They’re unstoppable, and we can do anything, whether it’s no outs or two outs or last inning; first inning, you’ve always got to be ready for every batter in the box.”
Hall (14-7) picked up the win in relief on Friday night and pitched a complete-game shutout in UCLA’s 5-0 win on Saturday. Yudin’s two-run homer in the second opened the scoring for the Bruins.
“It was a huge,” Yudin said of the Friday win. “It basically says to us, it doesn’t matter how far behind we are; we’re going to win, and we took that and we ran with it, and it really is the turning point for us right now.”
Yudin’s two-run single in the sixth inning of Sunday’s game was not enough as the Bruins lost 5-2.
The loss dropped UCLA to 29-12 overall and 6-6 in conference play. Washington (35-9, 6-8) scored five runs on Hall, who picked up the loss Sunday.
“I think that was a great moment,” coach Kelly Inouye-Perez said of the Bruins’ comeback on Friday. “It was very, very powerful.”
“This was a big weekend at the right time on the road against a quality opponent. They played some great softball and I think that’ll help us,” Inouye-Perez added. “To have the confidence late in the season … it’s contagious.”