Sun Devil Baseball Sweeps Doubleheader and Takes Series From Hawai'i
PHOENIX – There were 18 innings of high leverage baseball played on Saturday at Phoenix Municipal Stadium, with the No. 15 Sun Devil Baseball team battling to a doubleheader sweep and series victory over Hawai'i.
The Sun Devil came from behind in both games, taking the first game by a score of 6-5 and pulling away late in the second for a 9-6 victory. Over the course of the two games, there were a total of nine lead changes and five ties with ASU posting go-ahead runs in the eighth and seventh innings of the two games, respectively.
ASU improved to 4-2 on the season with victories in each of the first two series.
Drew Swift, Hunter Haas and Sean McLain finished with four hits over the two games, two in each game. Haas, Swift and Joe Lampe recorded their first home runs of the season – the latter two in back-to-back fashion in Game 2. Lampe led all Sun Devils with four RBIs over the two games.
Haas put ASU ahead for good in Game 1 with a two-run inside-the-park homer in the bottom of the eighth while ASU capitalized on a pair of Rainbow Warrior errors in the seventh inning of Game Two with a couple RBI Texas Leaguers to record a three-run frame and go ahead for good.
ASU got a solid 5.2 innings of work from Tyler Thornton in the first contest to keep the game within reach. Jared Glenn made his first appearance in Game Two, stopping the bleeding on a five-run Hawai'i fourth inning and going 3.2 innings with five strikeouts and just one run allowed to earn his first career victory.
The Sun Devils got saves from Ethan Long – his second of the year – and Brady Corrigan, who gave the Sun Devils two innings of perfect baseball in his first appearance of the season.
ASU will host its first midweek game of the season on Tuesday with an afternoon tilt against the Nevada Wolfpack at 1 p.m. AZT. The game will be hosted on the ASU Live Stream and also carried over the airwaves on KAZG 1440 AM.
Recaps of each of today's game can be found below.
It was a back-and-forth affair in the opening contest of the game, coming down to a two-run inside-the-park home run from Hunter Haas in the bottom of the eighth inning to provide the difference in a 6-5 victory for the Sun Devils.
There were five lead changes in the game, capped by Haas' late heroics. Haas, Drew Swift, Hunter Jump and Sean McLain all had two-hit efforts while Tyler Thornton was again efficient in his start on the mound, going 5.2 innings with seven strikeouts and just two earned runs allowed.
Things were all square at 4-4 in the eighth and the first two Sun Devil batters went down in order in the frame. Drew Swift knocked a first pitch single to start the two-out rally and let his activity on the base path take him to second on a wild pitch and quickly to third on a throwing miscue.
Haas did the rest, giving a 2-0 offering a ride off the wall in deep center field to easily score Swift for the go-ahead run. But as the ball caromed off the wall and back into center field, Haas was on his horse and rounding third as the relay throw came to the plate.
The throw was certainly on time but Haas turned on the shake-and-bake, dodging the tag at the plate and sliding in safely for his first career home run to make it 6-4.
It was ASU's first inside-the-park homer since Gage Canning on March 18, 2018.
Hawai'i threatened in the top of the ninth, but Ethan Long was able to come in and shut it down to earn his second save of the young season.
The Sun Devil bats came alive early in the second game of the day, erupting for four runs in the bottom of the second inning.
Jack Moss scored on a one-out single from Sean McLain to get the Sun Devils on the board first. Joe Lampe came to the plate with two outs in the frame and launched his first career ASU homer on a rope down the right field line for a two-run shot.
Drew Swift followed that with an absolutely monster slam over the visiting bullpen immediate after that with the back-to-back jacks giving ASU an early 4-0 lead.
The Sun Devil arms lost control in the top of the fourth, however, as ASU walked three, hit another and scattered several hits and Hawai'i took advantage to the tune of five runs and a 5-4 advantage.
With the bases loaded and one out, ASU looked to freshman Jared Glenn and the youngster delivered with back-to-back looking strikeouts to keep the game within reach.
Kai Murphy would come in with a pinch-hit sac fly in the bottom of the fifth to even things back up at 5-5.
ASU continued to manufacture runs in the bottom of the sixth after a leadoff single from Sam Ferri and a perfect hit-and-run from Kade Higgins to move him to third. Lampe did the rest with an easy sac fly to center field to score Ferri and put ASU back on top, 6-5.
Hawai'i again responded with an RBI single in the seventh, finally breaking through against Glenn for a run and again tying the game at 6-6.
Glenn gave ASU everything it needed to stay in the game however, going 3.2 innings with five strikeouts and allowing just one run on three hits.
That would be the final tie of the weekend, however, as ASU took advantage of a couple UH fielding miscues in the bottom of the seventh and found some daylight on a pair of RBI Texas League singles to record a three-run frame and go ahead 9-6.
Brady Corrigan did the rest, pitching two innings of perfect baseball with four strikeouts on the six batters he faced to earn the save in his first appearance of the year.