Working the long ball again
No. 15 Arizona State (6-0) kept winning on Tuesday after sweeping Cal State Fullerton (2-4) at Farrington Stadium.
After an offensive onslaught at the Kajikawa Classic, the Sun Devil lineup took some time to get going on Tuesday. Eventually, Arizona State turned it on as they won 8-0.
The Sun Devils manufactured a run in the second inning, but didn’t collect its first hit until the fourth.
Designated player Alli Tatnall finally broke up Cal State Fullerton pitcher Sophie Frost’s no-hitter effort. No runs were scored in the fourth, but the momentum of just seeing a hit clearly carried over to the next time up.
Center fielder Kindra Hackbarth blasted her first home run of the season to lead off the fifth. Fullerton recorded two straight outs before giving up three free passes to load the bases for DeNae Chatman. Her grand slam swing made the Titans pay and extended the Sun Devils’ lead to six.
Catcher Maddi Hackbarth’s two-RBI double acted as a walk-off as it enforced the the eight-run run-rule.
The offense was given plenty of time to kickstart because of the performance from right-handed freshman Allison Royalty. She gave up a single to Fullerton center fielder Megan Delgadillo to start the game, but never looked back after that. Royalty continued to impress, over six innings of work she struck out nine and only walked one. Her shutout also included just two total hits from the Titans.
Kindra Hackbarth got to show a lot of her tools in Arizona State’s 5-2 win in Tuesday’s second game. She launched another homer out to center and started the game singling up the middle. Her speed showed out as a stolen base and an interference allowed to to reach third before she scored on a wild pitch.
Right fielder Jazmine Hill had the other big blast in the fourth. Her two-run home run pushed the lead out to three. Chatman earlier in the game also had a RBI-single.
Lefty Lindsay Lopez started the game in the circle. The Titans played small play in the first two innings and put together a run in each. However, Lopez settled down nicely. She saw some trouble but worked out of it and had more clean innings than the beginning.
Cielo Meza got her first action in relief for Lopez. She worked the final two innings with a flawless mark to earn the save.
Arizona State’s next scheduled games are on Friday, Feb. 26 in a doubleheader matchup against New Mexico and Oklahoma.