Skip to Content, Navigation, or Footer.

ASU softball goes 4-2 at the Sun Devil Classic behind an electric crowd

During the Sun Devil Classic, the fans at Farrington Stadium were a significant factor in ASU's four wins over the weekend

ASU Sophomore Outfielder Tanya Windle (44) bats against BYU at Alberta B. Farrington Softball Stadium on Thursday, Feb. 15, 2024 in Tempe. ASU won 10-6.

ASU softball (11-6) went 4-2 in six games during the Sun Devil Classic last weekend, and the home crowd played a prominent role in half of those games, fueling the Sun Devils to two extra-inning wins in back-to-back nights at Farrington Stadium.

"Club Farrington was awesome, this place got electric," head coach Megan Bartlett said.

The classic started disappointingly, as ASU lost 12-2 to a Texas State team that took full advantage of any mistakes the team made. The next day, the Sun Devils were hoping to bounce back against Seton Hall, but things looked bleak when they were down 1-0 in the fourth inning. 

However, the tide quickly turned as the Sun Devils put three runs up on the board in the bottom of the fifth thanks to a double by freshman outfielder Jada Lewis, a single by sophomore outfielder Yannixa Acuña, and a triple by graduate student outfielder Kelsey Hall. The Sun Devils were able to hold on to win the game 4-2. 

The night-cap of Friday’s doubleheader was a game against the Ohio State University.

This game started ugly for ASU, going down 6-0 after the top of the fifth inning, but everything changed in a major way after freshman catcher Samantha Swan hit a pinch three-run blast to put the Devils back within three. Besides the lead changing from six to three, the biggest change was the crowd in the game. 

A group of ASU athletes and parents led by ASU running back Cam Skattebo and sophomore outfielder Tanya Windle’s dad got the crowd back into the game.

"Oh yeah, it’s huge," Windle said about her dad’s energy. "When I'm up to bat, he's the only person I hear."

The crowd started chanting for every player up to bat, joining along with the cheers from the dugout and even heckling the umpire a little bit. This was the big difference in the game. 

"That's a game changer," senior catcher Sara Kinch said. "Having the at-home atmosphere and having everyone there supporting you and literally the whole half of the stands cheering for you up to bat; nothing is better than that. It gets the dugout going and it makes me feel great."

Kinch fed off the crowd's energy and hit a walk-off blast in the 10th inning to end the Buckeyes' night. 

The fans were so important to the Sun Devils' 12-10 win over the Buckeyes that Bartlett said they should “get an assist” for this win. 

The energy and momentum from Friday night’s game carried into the team's next day of doubleheaders, where they faced Utah Valley University and Idaho State.

The Sun Devils picked up where they left off offensively, winning 9-4 over Utah Valley in a game that started the hottest weekend in Acuña’s career. Against the Wolverines, Acuña went 3-4 with three runs scored and two stolen bases.

"What makes Yannixa so good is she doesn’t ride the highs and lows," Bartlett said. "She loves to play. She shows up, does her thing and is pesky at the plate. She’s got real good strike zone awareness."

ASU struggled to replicate their offensive performance against Idaho State, as they could only scratch across one run through seven innings, but one run was enough to send the game to extras. 

In the bottom of eight, with a runner on second and the game tied, the Bengals intentionally walked two batters before sophomore catcher Shannon Cunningham

"I thought that was disrespectful," Cunningham said. "They're trying to do it to get a double play ball, and I was like, 'I'm going to hit this dang thing so hard that there’s no shot they’re gonna get a double play.'"

Shannon hit the first pitch she saw and went deep to left field to give the Sun Devils the 5-1 win.

The final game took place on Sunday against New Mexico State. Even though the Sun Devils lost 10-8 due to a depleted bullpen, Acuña crushed her first career homer to make light of a bad day for the team.

"It was amazing," Acuña said. "The pitcher was throwing up-spin, and I was waiting for it, and I was a little surprised. Rounding first base, I was still looking, and I was like, 'Oh, I just missed it.' Then it went over, and I just had the biggest shock on my face."

Acuña finished the last game of the weekend with one run and two RBIs. She currently leads the team in hits and stolen base runs.

"She's extremely talented, gifted, (with a) great hit ability and speed," Bartlett said. "She's going to force the pace of play and, hopefully, this whole preseason gives her the confidence to know she's going to be able to do that when the Pac-12 gets here."

The Sun Devils look to continue building on their 11-6 record with their last weekend of non-Pac-12 play with four games in the ASU Invitational.

Edited by Vinny DeAngelis, Walker Smith and Caera Learmonth.

Reach the reporter at and follow @haydencorrado21 on X.

Like The State Press on Facebook and follow @statepress on X.

Continue supporting student journalism and donate to The State Press today.

Subscribe to Pressing Matters



This website uses cookies to make your experience better and easier. By using this website you consent to our use of cookies. For more information, please see our Cookie Policy.