Willy Fox and a Triple Play Lead Sun Devils to 9-4 Victory
Jan. 28, 2006
TEMPE, Ariz. - After not having much success in last night's season opener, the Sun Devil baseball team was able to rebound on Saturday to earn a 9-4 victory over Cal State Northridge at Packard Stadium at Brock Ballpark. Willy Fox provided the fireworks, to the tune of two home runs in the first three innings, and the Sun Devil defense turned some heads, thanks to their triple play in the eighth inning to lead ASU to their first victory of the season.
Zechry Zinicola got the start for the Devils on the mound, and had little difficulty at the outset, cruising through the first three innings. Fox led off the second inning with a solo shot to left field, putting ASU up 1-0. In the third, Ryan Sontag and Ike Davis both singled, setting up Fox again. This time Fox took Matadors starter Edwin Quirarte deep to left center, putting Arizona State up 4-0. Fox's homer would be the Sun Devils last hit until the eighth inning.
Zinicola would run into some trouble in the fourth, as CSUN's Brett Blumenthal tripled to lead off the inning. Following a walk to Kris Kasarjian, a passed ball scored Blumenthal cutting the lead to 4-1. An RBI single by Chris Auten chased Zinicola, with ASU holding on to a 4-2 lead. Matt Trink took over on the mound, but the Matadors weren't done, as they added another run on an error by Fox that allowed Auten to score from third. The inning ended with ASU clinging to a 4-3 lead.
The Sun Devils were able to manufacture runs in the fifth and sixth inning without the aid of a base hit. Sontag led off the fifth with a walk, then stole second and advanced to third on a throwing error by the catcher. Colin Curtis knocked him in with an RBI groundout, and the lead was back to two at 5-3. The sixth inning was almost a carbon copy, as Eric Sogard led the inning off with a walk, moved on to third after a throwing error, and scored on an RBI groundout by JJ Sferra. Through six, the Devils were up 6-3.
After neither team scored in the seventh, the Matadors started a rally in the eighth against Brett Bordes. An error put Scott Lyons on first, and a base hit by Rodney McMahon put runners on first and second. After a wild pitch moved both runners over, the Matadors had runners at second and third with no one out, and gave Todd Shelton a chance to get the Matadors right back in it. Shelton hit a screaming liner to second baseman Eric Sogard, who snared the liner, whirled and fired to Joe Persichina, who doubled the runner off second. Persichina then fired a bullet to CJ Retherford at third that beat Scott Lyons for a triple play. That terrific trio ended the Matadors threat. It was the first triple play for Arizona State since April 16, 2004, when Travis Buck, Dustin Pedroia and Seth Dhaenens combined for one.
ASU would add three insurance runs in the eighth, thanks to a three-run double by Sontag. Daryl Arreola came in to seal the win in the ninth, and the Devils took a 9-4 victory back to the clubhouse for their first win of 2006.
Matt Trink earned the victory, and Ryan Sontag was 2-3 with three RBI and two walks. Willy Fox went 2-4 with his two round trippers and four RBI. The Sun Devils and Matadors will play the rubber game of the three-game series tomorrow afternoon at Packard Stadium at Brock Ballpark. First pitch is at 1:00 pm.