June 2, 2013
OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. - The Arizona State University softball team was eliminated from the Women's College World Series early Sunday morning, falling to Michigan by a score of 2-0 in a game that didn't start until nearly midnight in Oklahoma City, Okla.
Arizona State finished the season with a 50-12 record and went 5-2 in the NCAA Tournament while Michigan (51-12) advanced to play Washington in another elimination game on Sunday.
Neither team was overly successful in the batter's box but a two-run shot from UM's Sierra Romero in the top of the third provided all the offense the Wolverines would need as Sara Driesenga pitched seven solid innings to earn the win and improve to 31-8 on the season.
Dallas Escobedo (30-6) took the loss for Sun Devils, giving up two runs on three hits with four walks and three strikeouts in 2.1 innings pitched. Mackenzie Popescue pitched 4.2 scoreless innings but the Sun Devils couldn't capitalize on the scoreboard.
ASU struggled to figure out Driesenga, managing just two hits through the first four innings but failed to capitalize with runners on base as well, stranding all 10 runners that reached in the game.
The Sun Devils loaded the bases in the bottom of the third for their first real threat of the game but Haley Steele grounded harmlessly to second to strand the runners.
ASU loaded the bases again in the bottom of the fifth with no outs but Amber Freeman hit into a 5-2-3 double play followed by an intentional walk to Steele and a Bethany Kemp strikeout that left the runners stranded as the Wolverines escaped another bind.
It was just the fourth time in program history the Sun Devils advanced to the WCWS and did not pick up a victory, while the team was shut out for the first time this season and the first time since March 24, 2012 in a Super Regional contest against LSU.
Saturday's first pitch came at 11:54 p.m. CT - three hours and 24 minutes after the scheduled start time - following the 15-inning marathon in the first elimination game of the day that saw Florida knock off Nebraska 9-8.
Thank you to our wonderful fans here in OKC, Tempe and around the country! Was an amazing season and we are glad to have shared it with you-- ASU Softball (@ASUSoftball) June 2, 2013
NOTES The ASU softball program is 18-18 in 11 appearances in the WCWS and 83-49 overall in the NCAA Tournament (25 appearances). Clint Myers is 14-10 in the WCWS in seven appearances.
ASU went 5-2 in the NCAA Tournament this season.