ASU's Bach tosses perfect game
Sun Devils witness fourth perfect game in school history
TEMPE, Ariz. – Senior pitcher Hillary Bach threw the fourth perfect game in Arizona State history on Saturday night against Wichita State. No. 5 ASU then moved past Howard 15-3 in six innings in the nightcap.
Bach and the Devils blanked Wichita State 8-0 in five innings before a long battle against Howard. ASU improved to 19-2 on the year after sweeping the second day of the DeMarini Invitational.
Bach pitched five innings of perfect work, fanning five in the contest to shut out the Shockers, who fell to 6-8 with the loss. It marked Bach’s first career perfect game, and ASU’s first since the Katie Burkhart era (2005-08).
The Devils came sprinting out of the dugout, putting up five runs off three hits in the first frame. Base hits from Elizabeth Caporuscio and Amber Freeman scored three, before two sacrifice outs pulled in two more runs.
ASU kept lighting up the board, with a Sam Parlich single driving in Caporuscio in the bottom of the third. Caporuscio and Freeman then smacked back-to-back homers in the fourth to drive in three runs for the eventual 8-0 final score.
Bach’s record improved to 8-0 with an ERA of 0.44. Wichita State pitcher Katie Armagost was credited with the loss dropping her to 2-3.
The back-and-forth battle between ASU and Howard began with a leadoff home run from Jennie Ly to put the Bison at an early lead. Arizona State tied it in the top of the third as Annie Lockwood gunned home from first base on a Caporuscio double.
The Bison gained the upper hand with an RBI single from Rebecca Kirshner in the third. Half an inning later, Talor Haro stole two bases before coming in thanks to a base hit from Lucy Aubrecht. ASU then snagged the lead after Katelyn Boyd snuck one through the right side to plate pinch runner Kayla Ketchum.
The lead did not last for long though, with a Bison run from Trina Kindred tying the score at 3-3. A pitching change ensued for the Devils, who brought in Dallas Escobedo after Mackenzie Popescue threw six strikeouts, a season high.
ASU slammed its foot on the gas through the rest of the game, as Parlich drove in Caporuscio to put the Devils up by one and a sacrifice groundout and a wild pitch widened the gap to 6-3. ASU had nine runs on seven hits in the sixth inning, including a two-run homer over the wall from Aubrecht, for the final score of 15-3 in six complete innings as Escobedo kept the Bison in check.