Feb. 7, 2013
TEMPE, Ariz. - Arizona State University (1-0) softball opened the season with a 3-0 shutout over New Mexico (0-2) on Thursday night. The victory makes number 36 for the program on opening day.
Dallas Escobedo rolled through 15 New Mexico batters, just one shy of her career record, giving her first outing of the year a solid shutout. Elizabeth Caporuscio put up a showing of her own, going 3-for-3 at the plate with two runs scored.
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The Sun Devils got on the board in the second as Caporuscio came around on freshman Nikki Girard's first career RBI to make it 1-0. Sam Parlich extended the lead in the fourth to 2-0 after a single to left scored Kayla Ketchum from second. Caporuscio then crossed home on a UNM illegal pitch to close the stanza at 3-0.
Dallas Escobedo (1-0) held the Lobos off the bases through three frames, fanning six in New Mexico's first stretch of the lineup. The junior kept dealing as she tallied 13 strikeouts by the sixth, retiring the side in the third and sixth. She finished the outing with 15 strikeouts, just one shy of her career record. Lauren Soles (0-1) took the loss for New Mexico, who drops to 0-2 on the year.
ASU will face Cal State Northridge and Indiana on Friday starting at 4:30 p.m. MT. Over the weekend, the Sun Devils will play seven games, with six remaining following Thursday's 3-0 win against New Mexico. Stay on the air following ASU's final game of the night for a postgame interview with ASU student-athletes and the Blaze Radio announcers.
Sun Devil softball is 36-7 on opening day dating back to 1971. The last time ASU lost its first game of the season, all the way back in 1995.
Dallas Escobedo struck out 15 batters, one shy of her career record set her freshman season, and topping her season best of 14 during 2012.
Arizona State softball will begin the season with a preseason ranking of No. 4 in both the NFCA/USA Today poll and the ESPN.com/USA Softball poll. ASU happens to be the only team in the Top 10 of the 2013 NFCA Preseason Poll that has earned multiple NCAA titles.
Pac-12 schools made up seven of the Top 25 in the preseason poll: No. 19 UCLA (March 22-24), No. 21 Stanford (April 6-7), No. 16 Washington (April 12-14, in Tempe), No. 3 California (April 26-28, in Tempe), No. 13 Arizona (May 3-5) and No. 5 Oregon (May 9-11, in Tempe).
USA Softball's Top 50 Watch List for the 2013 USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year includes Escobedo, Johnson and Amber Freeman, who is one of just eight sophomores to make the cut. ASU is no stranger to this list, last season Katelyn Boyd made a run at the Top 3 finalist spots as a senior. From here the trio will await the Top 25 which will be announced in April. This is the second time for Escobedo to make the Watch List and a first for Johnson and Freeman. Learn more about our nominees here.