No. 11 Softball Upends No. 3 Stanford, 4-3, In Eight Innings
May 4, 2001
STANFORD, Calif. - Behind a three-run eighth inning rally, the 11th-ranked Arizona State softball team (32-17, 7-9 Pac-10) defeated third-ranked Stanford (46-10-1, 9-7 Pac-10), 4-3, today at Smith Stadium in Stanford, California. This was ASU's eighth extra inning game of the year and sixth Pac-10 road win. Erica Beach (15-8) pitched seven innings, allowing six hits, two earned runs with three strikeouts. Kirsten Voak pitched the eighth inning for her Pac-10 leading fourth save, allowing two hits with two strikeouts.
The Cardinal posted the first run of the game in the first inning. Robin Walker singled to center field, followed by a Jessica Mendoza double to center to drive in Walker. Arizona State tied the game in the third inning. Kristin Farber got on base with an infield single and then stole second. Missy Hixon singled to left field, advancing Farber to third. Nichole Thompson then hit a sacrifice fly to left field, driving in Farber to knot the game at one.
After the third inning, the game moved along a very quick pace. In the fifth inning ASU had a chance to break the tie. Kristen Swetel reached on an error by firstbase man Sarah Beeson. Jennifer Forner then sacrificed Swetel up to second. With one out, Farber followed with another infield hit to move Swetel to third. ASU now had runners on the corners, while Stanford made a pitching change from starter Maureen LeCocq to Jamie Forman-Lau. Farber then stole second base, giving her 14 on the year, but Forman-Lau retired the next two Sun Devil batters to end the threat.
Stanford also had a threat going in their half of the fifth with runners on second and third with two out, but Beach got the next batter to line out to Thompson at first base.
In the eighth inning, the Sun Devils collected three runs on three Stanford errors. Farber, for the third consecutive time got on base with an infield single. Hixon then put down a sacrifice bunt, but Beeson picked up the ball and over threw first as Hixon went to second and Farber to third. But on the continuation of the same play, Stanford's throw over to third to get Fraber was called interference on the third baseman, allowing Farber to go home. Hixon then advance to third on a pass ball. Thompson followed with a fielder's choice to shortstop, scoring Hixon as she slid underneath the Cardinal catcher. Kara Brun put down another sacrifice bunt to move Thompson to second. Phelan Wright then stepped to the plate a drilled a ball to center field, advancing Thompson to third and then to home as the Stanford centerfielder bobbled the ball.
However, the Cardinal would not go down easy as they recorded two runs in the bottom of the eighth. Walker doubled down the left field line followed by a Mendoza walk. ASU then brought in Voak for Beach to pitch to the final batters. After a pass ball to advance Walker and Mendoza to second and third, Beeson singled to left field, scoring both runs. Voak then struck out two batters and educed a fly ball to end the game.
Farber led ASU with a 3-for-3 game with two stolen bases and two runs scored. Wright continued her hot pace as she went 2-for-4 with a double. Thompson posted two RBIs with a run scored, while Hixon had a hit and a run scored.
Up next, ASU will stay in the Bay Area and take on fifth-ranked California on Saturday at 2:00 p.m.