Another fast start spurred Arizona State past the Nebraska softball team on Sunday, as the Sun Devils completed a three-game sweep of the Huskers with a 6-0 victory at Farrington Stadium.
ASU sprinted out to a 5-0 lead after two innings, continuing the theme of the weekend. In the three-game series, the Sun Devils (19-5) scored 27 of their 28 runs in the first two innings. Nebraska rebounded from the poor start and avoided the run-rule but fell to 4-16 on the season with the loss. Fourteen of the Huskers’ 16 losses have come to opponents who have spent at least one week ranked in the top 25 this season.
Freshman left-hander Sydney McLeod fought hard in the circle, but was saddled with her third loss to a ranked opponent this season. McLeod (0-3), a Goodyear, Ariz., native, settled in after a rough start. McLeod allowed six runs (five earned) on 11 hits but did not allow an earned run after the second inning.
Nebraska was retired on just six pitches in the top of the first inning before Arizona State grabbed a 3-0 lead four batters into the bottom of the frame following a three-run homer from Chelsea Gonzales.
The Sun Devils added two more runs in the second inning on a two-run single from Gonzales. Leading 5-0, ASU had a chance for more with the bases loaded and one out before McLeod fought back and escaped further damage following a pair of popups.
ASU struck again in the bottom of the third, taking advantage of a Husker error to take a 6-0 lead on a bloop RBI single from Taylor Becerra.
Offensively, Nebraska was never able to get much going against Arizona State’s Dale Ryndak. The Huskers failed to get a runner past first base in the game, as Ryndak allowed only two hits and faced just two batters over the minimum in her 6.0 innings. Senior Cassie McClure had both of the Huskers’ hits, singling in the second and fourth innings while finishing 2-for-3. McClure also pitched a scoreless sixth inning for the Big Red.
After playing its first 20 games of the season on the road, the Huskers return home to host their first home games next weekend, welcoming New Mexico State to Bowlin Stadium for a three-game series on Saturday and Sunday.