Cats Fall to Arizona State, 7-0
TUCSON, Ariz. – A four-run fifth inning was plenty of run support for Ryan Kellogg, who threw a complete-game shutout to give the Arizona State University baseball team a series-clinching 7-0 victory before a crowd of 3,409 at Hi Corbett Field on Saturday night.
Arizona State (23-16, 12-8 Pac-12) broke open a scoreless game with four runs on four hits and a trio of walks in the decisive fifth inning. Drew Stankiewicz ripped a two-out, two-run double to the gap in right-center, driving in Jake Peevyhouse and Christopher Beall, who opened the inning with singles.
Wildcat starter Cody Hamlin, who cruised through the first four innings, then walked Nathaniel Causey and gave up another two-run double to RJ Ybarra.
That was more than enough run support for Kellogg (W, 6-2), who scattered seven hits and a pair of walks in his nine full innings. The lefty struck out eight in the contests and held the Wildcats to a 2-for-11 clip with runners on base.
Arizona (17-25, 6-14 Pac-12) posed an early threat to Kellogg in the second when it loaded the bases. However, Kellogg struck out Riley Moore swinging to leave the bases loaded.
The Wildcats would not put another runner in scoring position until the sixth inning, but by then the Sun Devils had opened up a seven-run lead.
Like they did in the fifth inning, Peeveyhouse and Beall opened with the sixth with a pair of singles. Tucker Esmay followed with a single of his own, which knocked in Peeveyhouse and prompted the Wildcats to go the bullpen.
Nathan Bannister replaced Hamlin, but struggled to find the strike zone. After a quick groundout, the reliever walked two straight batters, including Nathaniel Causey to force in a run with the bases loaded. Then Ybarra drove in his third run of the game with a sacrifice fly for the seventh and final run of the night.
It was the bottom third of the order that did the damage for Arizona State, notably Peeveyhouse and Beall in the seventh and eighth spots in the order. Peevhouse collected two hits and two runs scored, while Beall went 4-for-5 with a pair of runs. Esmay added a hit, a run and an RBI in the No. 9 hole.
Hamlin (L, 5-3) suffered the loss and was charged with seven earned runs over five-plus innings. He gave up nine hits and a pair of walks, while collecting four strikeouts.
Tyler Parmenter pitched the final 3.1 shutout innings for Arizona with only one hit and a walk allowed.
Arizona’s best chance to avoid its sixth shutout of the season came in the sixth, when Trent Gilbert opened with a double. He moved to third on a groundout, but Kevin Newman, who had two hits on the night, grounded into an inning-ending double play. It was the sixth double play turned by the Sun Devils in the series.
With the victory, Arizona State claimed the conference and season series for the first time since 2011. The Sun Devils earn a full point awarded in the Territorial Cup Series, a year-long rivalry challenge between the schools across 20 sports. ASU now leads that series 9.5-6.5.
The Wildcats will try to avoid the sweep in Sunday’s finale, which will be televised live on ESPNU beginning at 4:30 p.m. A live radio broadcast will also air on 1290 AM.