By Kasey Kaler
In their first game under new head coach Craig Nicholson, the Sun Devil offense erupted for 18 runs, including four home runs, in the 10-inning affair against the Yavapai College Roughriders as the squad opened the 2013 Fall Schedule on Friday at Farrington Stadium.
The offense was kick-started by freshman Chelsea Gonzalez, who hit the first of two homers – and also her first-career home run as a Sun Devil – on the night in the second inning. The following inning, eight Sun Devils came to the plate and seven of them came in to score.
The Yavapai defense struggled on the night, committing eight errors, with one on display when sophomore Allie Butterfield came up with runners on second and third in the 6th inning. Butterfield dropped one in left-center and the centerfielder kicked the ball away, allowing Butterfield to score on an inside-the-park home run.
The Sun Devils racked up 17 hits during the game but it was the sixth inning that the team’s power on display when sophomore Jenn Soria and junior Haley Steele hit back-to-back homers, giving the Sun Devils four long balls on the night.
While the offense was on display, the pitching cruised through the night.
Dallas Escobedo pitched the first three innings, striking out seven batters, including the final five she faced and not allowing a hit in the process. Following Escobedo was sophomore Alexis Cooper (3.0 innings), Jenna Makis (2.0 innings) and Mackenzie Popescue (2.0 innings). The foursome combined for just three hits allowed and struck out 13 Roughriders.
While fall games are considered a tune-up for the 2014 season, the Sun Devils looked to be in top shape, something to look forward to for softball fans. Please join us on Sunday, Oct. 6 as we take on Eastern Arizona at 12:30 p.m. at Farrington Stadium.