No. 17 Sun Devils Host Utah Valley State On Wednesday
May 3, 2005
TEMPE, Ariz. (www.TheSunDevils.com) -- The No. 17 Arizona State Sun Devils will host the Utah Valley State College Wolverines in its final non-conference game of the season Wednesday at 6:30 p.m. at Winkles Field at Packard Stadium.
The Sun Devils are coming off a series loss at No. 4 Oregon State and are in third place in the Pac-10 with a 10-5 league record. After starting the season 6-9, ASU has won 23 of its last 31 games and head into its final non-conference tilt with an overall 29-17 record. Seven of ASU's final 10 games in the 2005 record season will be played at Packard Stadium, including key conference series against rival Arizona (May 14-16) and Washington State (May 27-29).
Utah Valley State College is in its second year as a Division I Independent and have a 14-33 season record heading into a Tuesday game against the University of Utah. Following the ASU-UVSC game on Wednesday, the Wolverines will travel to Tucson for a three-game series with the No. 8 Wildcats.
Formerly a junior college program, UVSC provided ASU with single-season home run record holder Mitch Jones. Jones played at Utah Valley State before joining the Sun Devils in 1999-2000. Jones set ASU's single-season home run record with 27 in 2000 and is currently playing for the Columbus Clippers in the Triple-A International League. Through 23 games of the 2005 season, Jones is hitting .367 (33-for-90) with seven home runs and a .722 slugging percentage. In back-to-back games earlier in the season, Jones hit for the cycle one day and then hit three home runs the following game.
The Sun Devils head into Wednesday's game hitting .317 with eight players hitting .300 or better. Junior All-American right fielder Travis Buck (Richland, Wash.) leads the team and ranks third in the Pac-10 hitting .387 (79-for-204) with 18 doubles, 35 RBI and 17 stolen bases. He also carries a season-high 10-game hitting streak into the game and along with teammate Jeff Larish has been named to the watch list for the Golden Spikes Award.
Larish (Tempe, Ariz.) leads the Pac-10 and ranks ninth nationally with 16 home runs. The senior first baseman is hitting .330 (58-for-176) with 48 RBI and a .688 slugging percentage. He also ranks tied for fourth in the ASU career record books with 44 home runs and is fifth with 216 RBI.
The Sun Devils have not announced a starting pitcher, but are expected to throw junior left-hander Brett Bordes (3-3, 3.42 ERA), junior left-hander Erik Averill (7-3, 3.46 ERA) or freshman right-hander Seth Garrison (0-0, 6.94 ERA).
The Utah Valley State game will be broadcast live in the greater Phoenix area on KDUS 1060 AM with Tim Healey and Bob Eger calling all the action. The game can also be followed on the internet with the statistical GameTracker at www.thesundevils.com.