No. 10 Arizona State Squeaks Past UCLA, 3-2

April 21, 2006

Los Angeles - No. 10 Arizona State survived two UCLA scoring threats in the eighth and ninth inning to hang on for a 3-2 win over the Bruins on Friday night at Jackie Robinson Stadium in game one of a three-game Pac-10 series. The loss drops UCLA to 21-16 overall and 5-5 in the Pac-10 while the Sun Devils improve to 28-12 and 7-3 in the Pac-10.

Freshman Ryan Babineau led the way for UCLA hitting 3-for-3 at the plate with his fourth home run of the season. Senior Josh Roenicke finished 2-for-4 with a run scored, and freshman Brandon Crawford added a RBI single.

Junior Hector Ambriz (5-5) went 7.0 solid innings in the start, striking out five Sun Devils and allowing three runs (two earned) on seven hits despite the loss.

Arizona State broke a scoreless tie in the top of the fifth to take a 1-0 lead. Andrew Romine hit a bloop double down the left field line to lead off the inning, and advanced to third on a passed ball. J.J. Sferra then grounded out to third base to score Romine for the first run of the game.

UCLA tied the game at 1-1 in the bottom of the fifth on a solo home run to left field by Babineau with two outs.

ASU starter Josh Satow retired 12-of-14 Bruins with nine strikeouts before giving up the home run to Babineau. Satow (3-0) earned the win going 5.0 innings with 10 strikeouts, allowing just one run on three hits.

The Sun Devils took a 2-1 lead in the top of the sixth inning on a solo home run to right field with two outs by Frank Mesa.

Arizona State went up 3-1 in the seventh inning. Colin Curtis reached second base on a dropped fly ball by freshman Tim Murphy in left field. Curtis would advance to third on a ground out Crawford at shortstop, and score on a line-drive base hit by Eric Sogard off of Ambriz.

UCLA battled for a run in the bottom of the seventh inning to cut the lead to 3-2. Roenicke started the rally with a two-out base hit to left field to extend his hitting streak to 12-consecutive games. Babineau followed with a single to give UCLA two runners on with two outs. Crawford then singled to right field to score Roenicke from second base.

Freshman Jermaine Curtis was hit by a pitch to load the bases with two outs, but senior Chris Jensen grounded out to shortstop to end the inning.

The Bruins used the 'hidden ball trick' in the top of the eighth inning to pick off Preston Paramore at second base after he walked and advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt, to get out of a possible Sun Devil scoring threat.

In the bottom of the eighth inning, UCLA put the tying run on base when junior Tim Stewart opened the set with a double down the left field line. With no outs, Eric Taylor, Jr. grounded out to first base to advance Stewart to third. Sophomore Mike Metzger struck out swinging for the second out in the inning, and senior Sean Smith hit a hard ground ball back to the ASU pitcher Brett Bordes to end the inning and strand Stewart at third base.

In the top of the ninth, ASU had runners at second and third with two outs, but junior Paul Oseguera struck out Sogard to end the inning and get out of the jam.

UCLA had another opportunity to tie the game in the bottom of the ninth inning. Roenicke led off the inning with an infield single, and advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt by Babineau. Roenicke was then thrown out at third trying to steal the base on the very next pitch for the second out. Crawford struck out swinging for the final out of the game.

UCLA and Arizona State will play game two of the three-game series on Saturday, April 22 at Jackie Robinson Stadium. Game time is set for 2 p.m.

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