Feb. 9, 2013
TEMPE, Ariz. - The Arizona State softball team (5-0) continues to dominate its home tournament, adding a pair of big wins to its victory bank on Saturday night. The Sun Devils had 10 hits in its 8-0 win against Kentucky and finished the night on a high note with a 7-0 shutout from Mackenzie Popescue against Western Michigan.
GAME ONE: ASU 8, Kentucky 1
Kentucky looked to be the first team to hold ASU off the board through two innings until Cheyenne Coyle singled through the left side. Sam Parlich followed in the next at-bat with a homer to left, her first of the season and 18th in her career. Parlich is now tied for 13th all-time at ASU in home runs and her bomb now extends the Sun Devil streak to four games in which ASU has scored by the second inning.
Elizabeth Caporuscio tripled in the third and came home on a sacrifice fly by Haley Steele, boosting ASU to a 3-0 advantage. The fourth inning was huge for the Sun Devils who scored five runs on five hits, including an Amber Freeman homer on the left line.
Arizona State entered the fifth ahead 8-0 and was pressing to send out its second opponent of the season on a mercy rule, but a home run by Griffin Joiner snapped Dallas Escobedo's shutout and brought the score to 8-1. That was as far as the Wildcats would get, eventually falling in seven.
Escobedo went the distance with eight strikeouts and one walk to improve to 3-0. Lauren Cumbess (1-1) picks up her first loss after exiting the game in the third.
GAME TWO: ASU 7, Western Michigan 0
ASU took no time to gain control of the game, bringing in four runs on as many hits in the opening frame. Freeman hit her third home run of the season to make it 2-0 while Caporuscio got the free trip home after being walked. Haley Steele followed with a double to right center only to score one pitch later as Coyle continued her home run streak, giving ASU a 4-0 edge.
Coyle has gone yard in three of the last four games and leads the team with four home runs on the year.
In the second, Freeman plated Caporuscio on a deep hit to center and ASU extended its lead once again, 5-0. Western Michigan didn't back down though, responding by loading the bases in the bottom of the second and forcing the Sun Devils to come up with two outs to extinguish the threat.
After four innings of no production outside of Mackenzie Popescue's strikeouts of WMU batters, Arizona State added two more runs to its 7-0 lead in the top of the seventh. Popescue closed the game with one final strikeout to tally eight in the complete outing, tying her career best.
ASU will finish the weekend with a doubleheader on Sunday. Game time is slated for an 11 a.m. start against Bradley followed by a 1:30 matchup against Boise State. Listen to all ASU home games on Blaze Radio!
Sam Parlich hit her first home run of the season against Kentucky in the second inning. The long ball is her 18th career, tying her for 13th all-time at ASU.
Amber Freeman, a sophomore, is now tied for 20th all-time in home runs with 15 in her career, three this season.
ASU has scored in the second inning in all five games of the season thus far.
Mackenzie Popescue tied her career high for most strikeouts in a single game with eight against Western Michigan.
The Sun Devils have nine home runs as a team: Coyle 4, Freeman 3, Kemp 1, Parlich 1.