ASU Clinches Second Consecutive World Series Appearance

May 26, 2007

Box Score

TEMPE, Ariz. -  A grand slam from Jackie Vasquez and a six-hit, 12 strikeout effort from Katie Burkhart claimed another first in ASU softball program history Saturday as the seventh-seeded ASU Sun Devils topped ten-seed LSU 7-4 in Game Two of the Tempe Super Regional to earn their second consecutive Women's College World Series appearance. It is the first time ASU has made back-to-back appearances in Oklahoma City after winning five straight in the 2007 NCAA Tournament. ASU is now 54-15 headed to Oklahoma while LSU wraps their season at 55-12.

 

ASU was the visiting team for Game Two of the Super Regional and decided to set the pace in their first at-bats as Jessica Mapes grabbed a lead-off single followed with back-to-back walks to Kaitlin Cochran and Mindy Cowles to load up the bags with no outs. Clean-up hitter Jackie Vasquez then dug in to swing away where she took a 2-1 pitch deep to right center for her first career grand slam and only her second career home run, giving the Sun Devils the 4-0 lead.

 

ASU never relinquished the lead even as the Tigers tried to claw back. A two-run home run from designated player Quinlan Duhon cut ASU's lead in half in the first inning, while another solo shot from catcher Kristen Hobbs put the score at 4-3 after only two innings of play. The teams kept it locked at that until the fifth when ASU tabbed two more on the Tigers with a two-RBI double to left center from Bianca Cruz, rallying ASU to a 6-3 lead.

 

LSU answered again though in the bottom half as Rachel Mitchell launched another solo shot to right center, cutting ASU's cushion to two. The LSU Tigers walked a Sun Devil run home in the sixth, but the padding was unnecessary as Katie Burkhart took the mound to shut the door on the Tigers as she allowed only one hit in the sixth and seventh inning to take the win and lock ASU's spot in the 2007 Women's College World Series.

 

The Sun Devils will now hit the road one last time as they head to their final destination: Oklahoma City. ASU will face the two-seed Northwestern Wildcats this Thursday, May 31 at Hall of Fame Stadium. Fans who wish to buy tickets can call, (405) 236-5000 as there are a limited number available.

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