March 9, 2001
SUNNYVALE, Calif. - Ninth-ranked Arizona State recorded 16 hits en route to defeating Santa Clara 9-1 this morning in the opening game of the National Invitational Softball Tournament at the Twin Creeks Complex in Sunnyvale. The game was called with no outs in the sixth inning as officials invoked the eight-run rule.
Santa Clara falls to 7-11 on the season while the Sun Devils --last year's NIST champions--improve to 18-5.
Sophomore catcher Roni Rivera drove in the Broncos' only run of the morning with a two-out single to center field. Junior Deanna Rodriguez opened the inning with an infield single and advanced to second while the Sun Devils recorded two outs. ASU walked senior centerfield Melanie Barker before Rivera's RBI. Sophomore Tracie Hall pinch hit for SCU and struck out swinging to end the half inning.
Arizona State opened the first inning with five runs off of five hits, leaving three players on base. Santa Clara was credited with one error in the inning. The Sun Devils added one run in each of the third and fifth innings and closed the game with two runs in the sixth.
Pool play continues this afternoon with a 4 p.m. game against Purdue and a 6 p.m. match-up with Sacramento State. The tournament continues through the weekend.