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ASU Softball: No. 7 Sun Devils happy to be home for No. 3 Oregon

ASU prepares for a three game set against the Ducks.

Brady Vernon/House of Sparky

The No. 7 Arizona State Sun Devils (33-5, 7-2 Pac-12) dealt with all types of delays and postponements due to rain in Corvallis, Oregon, but now against the other No. 3 Oregon (32-6, 7-2) foe, the Devils will happily start their six-game home stand against the Ducks.

The series begins Friday at 7 p.m. at Farrington Stadium. The two will meet again Saturday at 6 p.m., then Sunday at noon. Each game can be viewed through the Pac-12 Plus live stream.

The past weekend saw the Devils fighting till their last breath in Sunday’s 15 inning win over Oregon State (21-17. 4-8). Now, they continue on with their tough conference schedule, but in the comfort of the Arizona heat.

“It was like character building, is what our coaches told us, and I completely agree with it,” sophomore pitcher Giselle ‘G’ Juarez said. “It makes us have to go through those situations.”

ASU took two of the three games against Oregon State last weekend despite the weather. Though it ended their most recent winning streak at nine games, the Devils still are showing strong outings on the mound.

Behind Juarez, the pitching staff continues to prove dominant in the statistics. Among the four pitchers, they post a 1.18 team ERA (the ninth best in the nation) and have held opposing hitters to a .169 average. With 298 strikeouts and 52 walks, its strikeout to walk ratio of 5.73 ranks seventh in the nation and second in the conference.

Oregon comes into this series on a six-game winning streak and has won nine of 10 games. This includes a recent sweep against No. 12 Arizona (27-9, 6-6) where two of those games ended via the mercy-rule.

Oregon is bringing with them the recent Pac-12 player and pitcher of the week. Senior catcher Gwen Svekis tallied seven hits, scored five runs, and drove in seven over five games. Sophomore right-hander Miranda Elish is coming off a week with four wins in fourteen innings pitched, 31 strikeouts and no earned runs allowed. She also threw perfection against Portland State (10-27) last Tuesday, striking out 16 in the effort.

Oregon and ASU are currently tied for second in the conference standings behind No. 1 Washington (39-2, 10-2). Washington’s only two losses came against Arizona State last month.

“We’ve played some really good softball and Oregon has played some really good softball,” head coach Trisha Ford said, “I’m excited to see what kind of crowd we have this weekend and will really make this place feel really special.”