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ASU finishes perfect at Kajikawa Classic

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Photo by WCSN’s Kelci Cooper

The ASU softball team swept their doubleheader on Sunday to finish with a perfect 7-0 record in the Kajiakwa Classic. It was a tale of two completely different games for the Sun Devils with game one being all about pitching.

The Sun Devils mustered up just four hits against the Bradley Braves in their 3-0 victory. It was a pitching gem throughout between ASU’s Mackenzie Popescue and Bradley’s Madeline Lynch-Crumrine.

The Sun Devils got on the scoreboard in the bottom of the third inning when shortstop Cheyenne Coyle hit a solo shot over the centerfield wall. The blast was her fifth home run in what is now seven games for ASU.

When speaking about Coyle, head coach Clint Myers said, “Coyle has a pretty good idea of what she wants to do at the plate.”

However, this game wasn’t about Coyle because Popescue put on a clinic in the circle. She pitched six and a third innings of four-hit, shutout ball. Dallas Escobedo came in for the last two outs and recorded the save.

“Good teams find ways to win. This team is good. We had great pitching all weekend long, good defense and timely hitting,” Myers said.

The Sun Devils tacked on their second and third runs in the bottom of the sixth behind an Elizabeth Caporuscio double, but the one run was all the ASU pitching needed in their shutout performance.

The Sun Devils took the hot bats they found in the sixth inning of game one into game two and they didn’t cool off all day. Arizona State put up ten runs in their 10-0 victory over the Boise State Broncos.

ASU starting pitcher Dallas Escobedo couldn’t have been any happier with the way her offense lead the way on Sunday, “I always ask for one or two runs. The girls hit great all weekend.  There are no gaps in the lineup. I have confidence in our entire lineup.”

Escobedo should be just as proud of herself in the circle. The junior pitched five innings of perfect baseball before she was pulled for Alexis Cooper. Cooper pitched an inning of no-hit softball to secure the no-hitter for the Sun Devils staff.

“I focused on hitting spots, hitting corners and spinning the ball more. I feel great, hardest I’ve worked since being at ASU,” Escobedo said.

This is tough news for opponents as Escobedo looks to lead the Sun Devils to another NCAA National Championship. If she’s already in her groove, the Pac-12 needs to look out. ASU outscored their opponents by a whopping 45-2 margin in the Kajikawa Classic.

The Sun Devils next game is against Northern Iowa on February 15th as part of the Littlewood Classic in Tempe.

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