April 19, 2013
SALT LAKE CITY, Utah - Arizona State softball (38-6, 9-4 Pac-12) fell 5-4 in eight innings to Utah (20-23-1, 5-11 Pac-12) on Friday in the team's first loss of the year in extras.
Bethany Kemp provided the Sun Devil offense with three RBI on two home runs in a team-best showing at the plate. ASU reliever Mackenzie Popescue (16-2) took the loss after becoming the pitcher of record in the bottom of the seventh. Mariah Ramirez (7-9), also a reliever in the circle, picked up the upset victory for Utah after finishing the final three frames.
Saturday 4 p.m. PT | Live Stats | Live Stats | Radio
Utah got ahead 1-0 in the bottom of the first after Jackie Sweet scored via an RBI-single up the middle by Kate Dickman. Sweet reached on a one-out double to center. The doubles continued in the second when Marissa Mendenhall led off with a double to center. Mariah Ramirez scored pinch runner Trina Gomez, 2-0, in the next at-bat to stretch the lead on Utah's third double of the game by that point.
Bethany Kemp then made it a 2-2 tied ballgame with a solo home run in the fourth. A lead-off double by Nikki Girard in the sixth prompted Utah to bring in Ramirez for Kayce Nieto to pitch. Kemp made use of the change, blasting a two-run shot to left center for a 4-2 ASU lead. It marks Kemp's first two-homer game of her career.
Arizona State gave up back-to-back singles to start the bottom of the seventh but then turned a double-play to get ahead momentarily. Utah was able to score two runs on a pair of singles to tie it 4-4. Popescue came in for Escobedo after Utah's third run of the game and became the pitcher of record once the game tied.
Going to extra innings for just the third time this year, the Sun Devils fell 5-4 after a walk-off double in the bottom of the eighth by Shelby Pacheco scored Shelbi Everett.
Back at it again and looking to tie the series on Saturday, game at 12 p.m. PT live stats here thesundevils.com/gametracker/la...-- ASU Softball (@ASUSoftball) April 20, 2013
Live stats and radio will be provided by Utah for all three games in the series. ASU will play Saturday at 4 p.m. PT and Sunday at 11 a.m. PT. Saturday's game was moved to 4 p.m. PT due to inclement weather.
Friday's game was just the fifth time this season that ASU has allowed an opponent to score in the first inning. It also marks the eighth time an opponent has scored before ASU.
Haley Steele's double in the third is her 11th of the season and 22nd of her career, tying her for 20th all-time at ASU.
Bethany Kemp homered twice against Utah on Friday, the first time in her career she has hit multiple homers in a game. She has six total home runs this season.
ASU has played extra-inning ball three times this season (2-1), the loss against Utah the first extra-inning game in conference play. Previous games: 6-5 (12) vs. Portland State and 5-4 (8) against Pacific.
Amber Freeman tallied three hits in four at-bats.
Remaining Softball TV Schedule
April 26 vs. California 7 p.m. PT ESPNU (Gold Game, wear gold)
April 27 vs. California 7 p.m. PT Pac-12 Network
April 28 vs. California 3 p.m. PT Pac-12 Network
May 3 at Arizona 6 p.m. PT Pac-12 Network
May 4 at Arizona 6 p.m. PT Pac-12 Network
May 5 at Arizona 3 p.m. PT Pac-12 Network
May 10 vs. Oregon 5 p.m. PT Pac-12 Network
May 11 vs. Oregon 5 p.m. PT Pac-12 Network