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Offensive explosion leads Aggies to second power five win of the year

TEMPE, Arizona (KVIA) --  Find a way to win. Despite allowing runs in six of the seven innings, the Aggies (9-5) outdueled Arizona State (11-6) on the final day of the ASU/GCU Classic – defeating the Sun Devils 10-8 on a sunny afternoon inside Farrington Stadium. The win marks the Aggies second win over a program from a Power Five conference this season and represents the program's 10th win over the Sun Devils.
In a game in which the Aggies equaled their season high in runs, the Aggies received big offensive contributions from Dezianna Patmon and Jayleen Burton. After a strong Friday and Saturday, Patmon continued her breakout weekend as she finished the day with three hits, four RBIs and one home run in four at-bats. Meanwhile, Burton also logged three hits to match her career high while coming around to score three times against ASU.
In the circle, Emily Dix came into the game in the third inning and collected her fourth win of the season after giving up just three earned runs and striking out a pair of Sun Devil batters.
After being held scoreless during its previous six innings of action, NM State immediately put the pressure on Arizona State as both Jayleen Burton and Jillian Taylor recorded singles before eventually coming around to score, giving the Aggies a 2-0 lead after just one at-bat. The path around the bases for Burton included advancing on a pass ball while Taylor used the same pitch to move to second before later scoring on a wild pitch.
Arizona State was able to respond to the Aggie offense as a pair of back-to-back triples brought in two runs in the bottom of the first to draw even with NM State. The Sun Devils produced a second two-run inning in the second as Yannixa Acuña hit a two-RBI home run to right field to take a 4-2 lead.
The Sun Devils later continued their consistent start in the third inning as their third extra base hit of the game brought their fifth run of the game. Facing a three-run deficit, some heads up base running from Dezianna Patmon helped the Aggies pull back within two as she scored from second despite the ball never leaving the infield.
After ASU was able to add another run, Patmon again made her presence felt as she crushed a three-run home run to tie the game at six. This marked Patmon's ninth hit and second home run of the weekend while moving her RBI total for the five-game stretch to six.

The pendulum continued to swing as Arizona State scored for the fifth straight inning – moving ahead by one run thanks to an RBI triple. Once again, the Aggies absorbed the blow and threw a counter of their own as Kendal Lunar notched her fourth home run of the season to tie the game at seven in the top of the sixth. The Lunar solo shot also preceded the first scoreless inning for the Sun Devils as Emily Dix escaped the jam after allowing a pair of singles to start the inning.
With the score tied at seven entering the seventh inning, the Aggies found a way to match their highest scoring inning of the weekend as they posted three runs thanks to hits from Jayleen BurtonDezianna Patmon and Kristen Boyd. The big seventh inning also left Arizona State in need of a big inning of its own to avoid the loss. After scoring a run to cut the lead to two, the Aggie defense made the Sun Devils pay for their aggressive base running as Jayleen Burton gunned out Audrey LeClair at third base who was looking to move over after tagging up on the fly ball to left field.
With the win, the Aggies wrap up a three-day stretch which included five games and will now prepare for a similar schedule beginning Friday in Lubbock, Texas. Next weekend, the Aggies will compete in the Jeannine McHaney Memorial Classic where they will matchup against Merrimack to start the weekend before playing two games against Texas State and two games against host Texas Tech. NM State's first game of the week will begin at 8 a.m. MT on Friday, March 1, at Rocky Johnson Field.

Article Topic Follows: Sports

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Bea Martinez

NMSU Athletics


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