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PALM SPRINGS, Calif. – The Virginia softball team (9-5) concluded the 2011 Cathedral City Classic with a 9-3 loss to top-ranked Arizona Saturday. The Cavaliers concluded the tournament with a 3-2 record.

The Wildcats outhit UVa 13-6 for the contest, including three home runs.

Sophomore Melanie Mitchell took the loss after throwing the first 1 1/3 innings. She allowed four runs on six hits during that span with one walk. Junior Stephanie Coates came on to toss the final 5 2/3 innings; she gave up four runs on seven hits with three strikeouts.

Virginia was led at the plate by freshman Marcy Bowdren, who had a RBI triple, and junior Alison Pittman, who tallied a RBI double. Giannina Cipolloni, Taylor Williams and Stephanie Harris each tallied singles.

Shelby Babcock threw a complete game for Arizona. She finished with six strikeouts and six walks.

The Wildcats put together a 2-0 lead after one inning and expanded it to 6-0 after the second. Virginia got on the board with two runs in the bottom of the fifth inning. With two outs, Williams walked, then Bowdren followed with her triple to right center to bring home Williams. The next batter, Harris, singled to center to score Bowdren.

Arizona responded with three runs in the top of the sixth for a 9-2 lead. Virginia’s third run came in the bottom of the inning. Hawkins recorded an infield single to deep short to start the inning and teammate Lauren Didlake came on to run for her. Didlake moved to second on a wild pitch. Pittman then doubled to left center to score Didlake and make it a 9-3 contest.

Virginia heads to Walt Disney World for play in the ESPN Rise Tournament next weekend in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. The Cavaliers open the tournament at 10 a.m. Friday against Louisiana-Lafayette.

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