Buck's Big Hits Lead Sun Devils To 9-3 Win Over Oregon State

May 14, 2004

TEMPE, Ariz. (www.TheSunDevils.com) -- Arizona State sophomore right fielder Travis Buck went 2-for-5 with four RBI and had a pair of key hits to lead the No. 14 Sun Devils to a 9-3 victory over the Oregon State Beavers Friday night in Pac-10 action at Packard Stadium.

ASU won its fifth straight and 10th in last 12 games to improve to 33-13 overall and moved into a tie for third place in the Pac-10 with an 8-8 mark. Oregon State drops to 27-16 overall and 7-9 in Pac-10 play.

'I thought we did a great job of battling tonight and finishing the game,' said ASU head coach Pat Murphy. 'We had some chances early that we should have capitalized on, but came through in the end. Averill and Zinicola were lights out and I really thought Mousser gave another solid start.'

After a solid start by senior Jeff Mousser (5.0 IP, 4 H, 3 R), sophomore lefty Erik Averill and Zechry Zinicola combined for four shutout innings to seal the win. Averill (Orange, Calif.) struck out three and allowed only one hit in two innings to pick up the win and improve to 4-2 on the year. Zinicola (San Bernadino, Calif.) earned his fifth save of the year by dominating the Beavers with four strikeouts in two innings.

OSU senior starter Jake Postlewait, who entered the game tied for the Pac-10 lead with nine wins, suffered the loss giving up nine hits and five runs in 5.2 innings. Postlewait, who beat ASU last year allowing only one run in a complete-game effort in Corvallis, fell to 9-3 on the year.

Down 3-1 in the bottom of the sixth inning, the Devils scored four runs to take a 5-3 lead. Josh Asanovich (Gold Canyon) doubled to lead off the inning and moved to third on a single by junior catcher Tuffy Gosewisch (Scottsdale). Freshman Colin Curtis (Issaquah, Wash.) drove home a run on a fielder's choice and senior Nick Walsh (Alamo, Calif.) tied the game with a safety squeeze bunt to first base. After a walk to Dustin Pedroia, Buck (Richland, Wash.) then drove a two-out offering from Postlewait up the middle to score the eventual game-winning run. A perfectly executed double-steal plated Pedroia to add an insurance run in the four-run frame.

'That was a big inning and Travis (Buck) had a great at-bat and battled Postlewait,' added Murphy on his sophomore right fielder. 'He fouled some pitches off and got to a full count before putting a real good swing on the ball to give us the lead. We did a lot of the little things good late in the game and that is important whe you are playing playoff-type baseball.'

With Averill and Zinicola in cruise control, the Devils added four more runs in the eighth inning to put the game out of reach. Buck plated two with a double to the right field fence off reliever Nathan Pendley and Zinicola drove home a run with a two-out single to left field.

ASU grabbed the early lead in the bottom of the first inning. Pedroia (Woodland, Calif.) tripled to right field to lead off the game and scored on a ground out to first base by Buck. OSU then rallied to take a 3-1 lead by scoring two in the third inning and one in the sixth.

ASU out-hit OSU 12-5 with Walsh leading all players with three hits (3-for-3, RBI). Junior left fielder Jeff Larish (Tempe) extended his hitting streak to 12 games with a 2-for-5 performance.

Oregon State center fielder Aaron Mathews led the Beavers going 2-for-3 with one RBI.

The Sun Devils and Beavers continue the three-game Pac-10 series Saturday at 7 p.m. at Packard Stadium. The game will be televised live locally on AZ-TV with Doug Gerlach and George Allen calling all the action. The game will also be broadcast on the radio on KDUS 1060 AM. The first 500 fans in attendance will receive the third and final 10-card baseball card set. ASU junior ace Jason Urquidez (9-2, 3.15 ERA) is scheduled to face OSU freshman right-hander Dallas Buck (3-3, 5.29 ERA).

Game Notes: Jeff Larish (12 games), Travis Buck (9 games), Josh Asanovich (6 games), Tuffy Gosewisch (6 games) and Colin Curtis (5 games) each extended their respective hitting streaks... ASU is now 21-3 when scoring in the first inning this season... Buck leads the team with 53 RBI after notching his 14th multi-hit game of the year, but had not recorded an RBI in the last five games and only four in his last nine before tonight... Buck now has six GWRBI this season... Pedroia was 1-for-3 with three runs scored and hit his first triple of the year for his team-leading 31st extra base hit of the year... the first-inning triple was also Pedroia's 280th career hit in his 172nd career game... ASU is now 26-10 all-time against Oregon State and has won eight of the last nine against the Beavers... ASU tallied its 15th game this season without an error and 11th straight game with one or less error.

Arizona State 9, Oregon State 3 (May 14, 2004 at Tempe, Ariz.)----------------------------------------------------------------------Oregon State........ 002 001 000  -  3  5  5      (27-16, 7-9 Pac-10)Arizona State....... 100 004 04X  -  9 12  0      (33-13, 8-8 Pac-10)----------------------------------------------------------------------Pitchers: Oregon State - Postlewait; Pendley(6).Arizona State - Mousser; Averill(6); Zinicola(8).Win-Averill(4-2)  Save-Zinicola(5)  Loss-Postlewait(9-3)  T-3:26  A-2509

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