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ASU Softball: Sun Devils advance to Tuscaloosa Regional Final

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1-0 in elimination games

Brady Vernon/House of Sparky

Shortly after a loss against Alabama, Arizona State (2-1 in postseason) had no time to feel down. They had to respond quickly in an elimination game against Lipscomb (1-2 in postseason).

The Sun Devils evaded elimination by putting together a 10-1 defeat in a shortened six-inning game.

Although the scoreboard may not indicate it, the contest was tight through the first five innings. Lipscomb struck first in the top of the first inning, but ASU would respond on an RBI from junior outfielder Kindra Hackbarth later in the third.

From there, both teams would compete in a tight pitcher’s duel. However, the dam broke open in the sixth inning. The Devils put up nine runs and chased Lipscomb senior pitcher Mandy Jordan, who had pitched well all weekend until the big outbreak.

Leading the way for the offensive onslaught was junior shortstop Jade Gortarez. She provided a go-ahead single, then others followed suit. Sophomore third baseman Kiara Kennedy drove in two RBI’s with the bases loaded, and sophomore second baseman Bella Loomis was 2-3 with two RBI’s.

Among others, senior left fielder Skylar McCarty had two hits, and freshman outfielder Yannira Acuna had a double. ASU ended the game piling up 10 hits and they were 5-12 with runners in scoring position.

What looked like a tight game turned into a blowout after the sixth inning. In the circle, junior Sam Mejia was poised and efficient in a win or go home game. She threw six innings while allowing just one run and striking out seven.

Her only blemish was the lone run she allowed in the first inning, and her biggest moment of the evening was when she worked around two runners in scoring position with one out in the fifth.

Seven different Sun Devils had hits, and the team avoided elimination after a long day at the ballpark.

To advance to the Super Regionals, ASU will have to defeat Alabama twice on their home field tomorrow afternoon.

First pitch of the Regional Final is slated for 11 a.m. MST. If the Devils win the first game, their will be a second win or go home matchup to determine who advances.