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Misplays cost ASU softball in loss to Florida

February 20, 2009

Costly errors allowing seven unearned runs and lack of offensive firepower doomed the third-ranked Sun Devil Softball squad Thursday afternoon as they opened the Plam Springs Classic with an 8-2 loss to the second-ranked Florida Gators. The Sun Devils are now 11-2 overall as Florida advances to 9-1.

The Sun Devils struck first in the first inning after they loaded the bases with no outs to have freshman shortstop Katelyn Boyd took the first pitch she saw from Stacey Nelson for a ride to left field to plate Jessica Mapes and snag a 1-0 lead. Megan Elliott came in for the bottom of the inning to allow only four batters up before retiring the inning.

The Sun Devils were able to put runners in scoring position in the third and fifth inning, but couldn't finish the job, which saw the Florida Gators take the bait in the fifth as an error prolonged the inning only to see UF rattle off eight runs in the inning, leaving the Sun Devils shell-shocked.

ASU showed a sign of life in the seventh inning, bringing home a run and looking to threaten for more, but Stacey Nelson and the Gators clamped down and finished the job as they walked off with the win.

The Sun Devils will get back to work tomorrow as they face two ranked opponents, the No. 12 Northwestern Wildcats at 12:30 p.m. and the No. 6 Oklahoma Sooners at 8:00 p.m. in Cathedral City at Big League Dreams ballpark.