(Photo: Alli Cline/WCSN)
The Arizona State Sun Devils had their best performance of the season thus far. The Sun Devils pulled together a 10-2 victory, which would be cut short in the sixth inning due to the mercy rule.
On the mound for both teams were their aces but neither ended with the performance they were looking for. ASU freshman Dale Ryndak gave up both of Indiana’s runs in four innings of work and on the other side Miranda Tamayo was sent home early after giving up three runs in the third inning.
In the bottom of the third inning, ASU got on the board with a two-run homer off the bat of Haley Steele, which tied the game at one run a piece. However the damage to Tamayo wasn’t done.
“I feel like Haley’s Homerun in the third inning was the turning point for us in the game,” ASU head coach Craig Nicholson said.
The next batter, senior catcher Amber Freeman, notched her first homer of the season when she crushed a high-fastball and took it deep to left-center field giving the Sun Devils a two-run lead. This shot by Freeman put her tied for fourth on the all-time ASU softball home run list with 42.
Hoosiers coach Michelle Gardner decided she had seen enough and replaced ace Miranda Tamayo with Emily Kirk.
Kirk entered the game but it wouldn’t make much of a difference. After giving up back-to-back hits, catcher Katee Aguirre homered to center field giving the Sun Devils a 6-1 lead.
The Hoosiers wouldn’t let the six-run lead bother them as Michelle Huber took Ryndak deep, making it a 6-2 game.
The next inning, ASU would answer back thanks in part to an error by Hoosiers right fielder Brianna Meyer. Katee Aguirre took advantage of her speed and made it all the way to third base. Nikki Girard would finish the job and score Aguirre with a single to right field. ASU gets back the five run lead, 7-2.
The damage wasn’t done for the Sun Devils as they tacked on three more runs in the bottom of the sixth inning forcing the mercy rule.
Two batters later, Aguirre ripped a hit to right field bringing Kemp home from second base. That hit topped off her 2-for-4 four RBI performance.
“The way we’ve been playing shows that we can play and we’re ready to take on anybody,” Aguirre said.
The Sun Devils will get another test when they take on Texas Sunday morning in the final day of the Kajikawa Classic. First-pitch is 11:30.