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ASU Softball: Sun Devils season ends after a wild contest with Alabama

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They battled to the end

Brady Vernon/House of Sparky

Skylar McCarty hit it hard, it just happened to be right at third baseman Maddie Morgan. The line drive out clinched a spot in the Super Regionals for Alabama (55-7).

In the top part of the seventh, Crimson Tide right fielder KB Sides dropped in a single for a RBI, that eventually difference in the 9-8 loss suffered by Arizona State (35-20).

The Sun Devils rushed out to a five-run lead after a pair of home runs from junior shortstop Jade Gortarez and senior center fielder Morgan Howe. It quickly evaporated at the start of the fifth inning.

Alabama left fielder Merris Schroder injected life into the Tide’s offense against ASU starter Cielo Meza. Through four frames, Meza limited Alabama to three hits, but a solo home run from Schroder changed the attitude. The next three batters reached on infield singles and a walk.

That brought up the dangerous first baseman Bailey Hemphill with the bases loaded. Her swing launched a game-tying grand slam to knot it up at 5-5.

Alabama scored three more the next inning off of junior righty Samantha Mejia, who replaced Meza in the circle.

ASU answered back with a three-run, two-out rally. Howe, McCarty and junior right fielder Kindra Hackbarth walked to load the bases. Two singles from Gortarez and junior catcher Maddi Hackbarth tied it back up. However, those were the last runs for ASU.

Howe, McCarty and injured third baseman Taylor Becerra will depart as graduates for the Sun Devils.