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ASU Softball: No. 7 Devils drop game one to No. 3 Oregon on windy evening

Juarez allowed two earned runs in her complete game loss

Brady Vernon/House of Sparky

No. 7 Arizona State (33-6, 7-3 Pac-12) fell 5-0 to No. 3 Oregon (33-6, 8-2) on Friday night in the first of a three-game series.

Giselle ‘G’ Juarez was tagged multiple times by the long ball and was unable to receive support from her offense. She threw a complete game, allowing six hits, five runs (two earned), two walks and struck out five batters on 109 pitches. This is just her second loss of the season.

“The ball just didn’t fall our way,” Juarez said. “If we come and play our game like we usually do, we’ll be okay.”

While the wind was blowing heavily from left to right field, a lot of the players explained how it should not be an issue, especially if Oregon had to play in it as well.

“We had to practice in this wind yesterday, but it’s no excuse to be able to come out here and not play our game in this wind,” freshman first baseman Danielle Gibson said. “We have to play our game in this element or not and just sharpen up.”

“At the end of the day it is not an excuse,” sophomore shortstop Jade Gortarez said. “It got to us on the one pop-up but other than that it wasn’t a big deal.”

Though it was 73 degrees, the wind was traveling at speeds of 19 mph. Several stoppages of play occurred as the game went on due to extreme dust clouds carrying from the outfield into the stands.

“Most of us are playing in this,” coach Trisha Ford said. “We should be more used to it than they should be so it is not a thing.”

ASU did not have several opportunities to score. The Sun Devils only totaled three hits, two of which were from Gibson. ASU’s only threat was in the first inning.

Sophomore right fielder Kindra Hackbarth led off the offense with a single. Gortarez grounded into a fielder’s choice and she was safe at first with Hackbarth out at second.

Junior center fielder Morgan Howe then hit into what could have been a double play to end the inning, but a drop on the transfer by senior shortstop DJ Sanders caused confusion from the umpires who at first called Gortarez safe, but then later called her out. Gibson then singled and Howe advanced to third. Redshirt senior second baseman Marisa Stankiewicz then struck out to end the inning and the threat.

ASU never got into scoring position again.

This game also saw a couple of injury scares with Stankiewicz and Hackbarth. On a pop up between the two, both collided into one another in an attempt to make the catch and unfortunately neither one came up with the ball. Hackbarth and Stankiewicz both stayed in the game. Coach Ford said that the injuries were minor, and they are good to go for Saturday’s game.

The two teams will square off Saturday at Farrington Stadium at 6 p.m. The game will be live streamed through Pac-12 Plus.