Myers Shines With 21st Multi-hit Game

April 6, 2001

LOS ANGELES -- USC starting pitcher Mark Prior scattered seven hits andstruck out seven in eight innings to improve to 9-1 on the year, helpinglift the No. 12 Trojans to a 11-2 victory over the No. 10 Arizona State SunDevils in Pacific-10 baseball action Friday night at Dedeaux Field.

Despite the loss, ASU scored a single tally in the top of the seventh inningto run its consecutive games scoring streak to 349 games, tying the NCAArecord set by Coastal Carolina. A two-out single to center field by seniorthird baseman Mike Lopez scored Casey Myers, giving the Sun Devils a chanceto break the record Saturday. Ironically, ASU was last shut out six yearsago tomorrow (April 7, 1995) when they were handed a 9-0 setback against thesame USC Trojans at the same Dedeaux Field.

'The loss overshadows the record, but it is a real tribute to this programand the kids in it,' said ASU head coach Pat Murphy. 'To go out there andbattle everyday until the ninth inning and play all nine innings reallytells a lot about this program. In a tough conference against the toughestpitchers in the nation, our program has put up some great numbers.'

With the win the Trojans, who were picked to win the Pac-10 in the annualpreseason coaches poll, improved to 5-2 in Pac-10 play this year and havenow won three straight to improve to 22-11 overall. USC now leads theall-time series with the Sun Devils 82-77 and have won five of the lastseven in the last three years. Arizona State dropped its fifth game out ofits last six contests, falling to 21-10-1 on the year and 4-6 in Pac-10play.

Prior, who was recently tabbed as the No. 1 college prospect in the nationby Baseball America, was phenomenal in his 10th start of the year,scattering seven hits and one run in eight strong innings to improve to 9-1on the year to overtake the national lead in wins. The Team USA member andone-time transfer from Vanderbilt, struck out seven to give him 109 on theyear in 73.2 innings. He lowered ERA to 1.34 in his 128-pitch outing.

'Prior is one of the best in the nation, no doubt about it,' said Murphy.'They played great defense and got some timely hitting. When that happensand you have Prior on the mound, a lot of team in the nation aren't going topick up a win. They are a good club and played well tonight. We have to comeout tomorrow with Switzer on the mound and comeback strong.'

USC manufactured a run in the bottom of the second to take an early 1-0 leadwithout the benefit of a hit. A walk and a hit-by-pitch to lead off theinning came back to haunt Sun Devil starter Ryan Schroyer. After a perfectlyexecuted sacrifice bunt by senior shortstop Seth Davidson, right fielder RobGaribaldi scored the single tally on a groundout to second base.

Schroyer (2-2) got in trouble again in the third, this time with the Trojansstringing together three consecutive hits to leadoff the inning and sevenoverall to score five runs. Leadoff singles by center fielder Brian Barreand third baseman Michael Moon fueled the rally, and then sophomore secondbaseman Anthony Lunetta provided the big blow with a double down the rightfield line to stake the Trojans to a 3-0 lead. Designated hitter Bill Peaveyadded a run-scoring single to put USC up 4-0 and catcher Alberto Concepciondoubled to chase Schroyer from the game.

With a nine-run lead at his back, Prior was masterful in keeping the SunDevil bats in check as any attempt at a comeback by ASU was shut down. Afterallowing a double to ASU All-American Casey Myers in the fourth inning,Prior retired eight in a row until the seventh inning. After the five-runthird frame, USC added two runs in the fourth, a solo home run in the sixthby Peavey and two runs in the eighth to bring the final Trojan tally to 11runs. Peavey was 2-for-3 with four runs scored and three RBI to pace theTrojans 12-hit attack at the plate. Lunetta and Davidson also added a pairof hits and RBI.

In addition to the run-scoring single by Lopez, ASU freshman first basemanJeremy West belted his team-leading sixth home run of the year with atowering shot to left field in the ninth. Myers was 2-for-4 to collect his21st multi-hit game of the year and the 87th of his career. Center fielderChris Duffy was the only other Sun Devil to collect more than one hit, going2-for-4 out of the leadoff spot.

The Sun Devils and Trojans will square off in the second game of thethree-game Pac-10 series Saturday at 1 p.m. at Dedeaux Field. ASU ace JonSwitzer (4-1, 3.84) will match up against reigning Pac-10 Pitcher of theYear Ric Currier (5-1, 2.26). The game can be listened to live over theairwaves in the Phoenix area on XTRA 910 AM.

USC 11, Arizona State 2 (Apr 06, 2001 at Los Angeles, Calif.)----------------------------------------------------------------------Arizona State....... 000 000 101  -  2  8  1      (21-10-1, 4-6 PAC-10)USC................. 015 201 02X  - 11 12  0      (22-11, 5-2 PAC-10)----------------------------------------------------------------------Pitchers: Arizona State - Schroyer, Pezely(3), Johnson(5), Jackson(8).USC - Prior, Bannister(9).Win-Prior(9-1)  Loss-Schroyer(2-2)  T-3:05  A-945HR ASU - West (6). HR USC - Peavey (5).

Game notes:
ASU scores in 349th consecutive game, tying NCAA record.
Ty Johnson ejected in eighth inning for hitting Rob Peavey.
Casey Myers records 21st multi-hit game of 2001 and 87th of career.

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