ASU softball drops two straight games in Mary Nutter Collegiate Classic

The Sun Devils fell to No. 7 Florida, Notre Dame

No. 16 ASU softball dropped back-to-back games to No. 7 Florida and Notre Dame Saturday night.

Florida

After scoring 13 or more runs in their last three games, the Sun Devil bats went cold in their 4-1 loss to No. 7 ranked Florida Saturday.

Despite another strong performance by junior pitcher Madison Preston, the ASU offense only provided one run of support.

Preston pitched four straight innings of shut-out ball. It wasn’t until the fifth inning when the Gators put their first run on the board.

In the fifth inning Preston got two quick outs, but two walks and a single loaded the bases for Florida. Preston then hit freshman right fielder Baylee Goddard letting junior second baseman Hannah Adams walked home from third.

However, the Florida lead did not last for long as the Sun Devils put up their first run of the game in the fifth inning. With runners on first and second, junior second baseman Bella Loomis singled up the middle and drove in sophomore pinch runner Olivia Miller

In the sixth inning, Preston continued to struggle in the circle for ASU as she allowed three more runs with one out left in the inning. Consecutive singles from Adams and senior first baseman Kendyl Lindaman knocked in the Gator’s final three runs of the game.

Nevertheless, the Sun Devils had their fair share of scoring opportunities. ASU loaded the bases in the sixth inning, but neither junior third baseman Kiara Kennedy nor sophomore left fielder Makenna Harper were able to knock in an ASU runner.

Redshirt senior pitcher Cielo Meza replaced Preston and retired the side in the seventh. The Sun Devils squandered their last comeback opportunity as senior catcher Maddi Hackbarth lined into a double play and freshman shortstop Alynah Torres popped out to end the game, stranding runners in scoring position. 

Notre Dame

In the second game of their double header, the Sun Devils struggled once again as they lost 7-3 to Notre Dame.

After pitching the last inning against Florida, Meza started the game versus the Fighting Irish and faced problems from the get-go. 

Freshman left fielder Leea Hanks and freshman designated player Miranda Johnson both batted runners in in the first inning. Then, senior pitcher Samantha Mejia replaced Meza, but was not much better over the course of the rest of the game.

Sophomore pitcher Payton Tidd scored Notre Dame’s only run in the second on an error. The Fighting Irish offense then put up three runs off of a sacrifice fly and a double moving their run total to six through four innings.

The ASU offense put up their only runs of the game in the fourth inning. Maddi Hackbarth started the inning off with a two-run home run to center field and senior designated player Allison Tatnall scored on a throwing error.

The Fighting Irish put up one more run in the seventh inning for good measure.

The Sun Devils will look to bounce back tomorrow, as they take on Cal State Fullerton in their last game in the Mary Nutter Collegiate Classic. 


Reach the reporter at cfahrend@asu.edu and follow @chris_drop_ on Twitter.

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