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ASU baseball: Lilek stars as Sun Devils beat Huskies in conference opener

Brett Lilek allowed just one run and struck out six in seven innings for ASU.

Sophomore outfielder Johnny Sewald had two hits and an RBI in the victory.
Sophomore outfielder Johnny Sewald had two hits and an RBI in the victory.
(Danny Shapiro/House of Sparky)

It was only a matter of time before it ended and Brett Lilek couldn't care less.

The sophomore lefty's scoreless streak was snapped after 20.2 innings, but ASU baseball defeated Washington 4-1 Friday night in the first conference game of the season.

"To be honest, the only thing I care about is a W on the scoreboard," Lilek said. "No matter how we get it, I could hit five more people, walk three more, but we got the W and that's all that matters to me."

Lilek (3-0) was in control for most of the game, allowing just two hits and no runs to the Huskies (10-5-1, 0-1, Pac-12) while striking out six over the first six innings.

The streak came to an end with two outs in the seventh when Lilek allowed a two-out triple down the left-field line to Huskies' nine-hole hitter Erik Forgione.

Overall, it was another impressive outing from Lilek, who dropped his season ERA to 0.96 and stopped the Huskies seven-game winning streak.

"It feels pretty well," Lilek said. "I think we've got a pretty good system going team-wise."

The game shifted towards the Sun Devils (9-6, 1-0) in the third inning when Lilek squeezed his way out of a jam and the offense responded.

Following singles from sophomore outfielder Chris Beall and freshman shortstop Colby Woodmansee, freshman second baseman David Greer grounded in the first run of the game.

The next batter, sophomore outfielder Johnny Sewald, doubled into the left-center gap to score Woodmansee and double the Sun Devil lead and freshman catcher Brian Serven singled home Sewald one batter late.

Sun Devil coach Tim Esmay didn't downplay the significance of the third inning.

"It was a game-changer, momentum-changer," Esmay said. "That's what the Pac is all about."

Sophomore Ryan Burr picked up his third save in as many attempts since his move back to the bullpen while Huskies junior starter Jared Fisher (1-2) pitched a complete game in the loss.

The game was a stark contrast from the Sun Devils' Pac-12 opener last season-a 15-4 loss to Washington State.

"It's a win we like to win," Esmay said. "To start off the Pac and play well tonight is exciting."

The Sun Devils and Huskies continue their series tomorrow night at 6:30 p.m., when former Sun Devil players from the 1980's, including MLB home-run leader Barry Bonds, will be honored.