Arizona State (1-0) enjoyed a 3-1 over the Northwestern Wildcats on Friday afternoon.
Here are some takeaways from the Sun Devils’ opening day victory:
Eli Lingos a Go-Go on the Mound
After a 3-5, 4.50 ERA sophomore season, a new, improved and polished Lingos tossed an opening day shutout 6.2 innings with three hits and six strike outs.
With his fastball sitting around 88 miles per hour and a sinking 12-6 curve ball that froze batters up and down the Wildcats’ order, Lingos was brilliant on the mound.
The junior left-hander ran into little trouble on Thursday afternoon. The most batters he faced on the mound was five in the fifth inning.
In the second inning, he allowed Wildcat runners to get onto first and third before picking off Joe Hoschiet at first base to earn the third out. Two Wildcat runners were left stranded first and second in the fifth inning when Lingos forced lead-off hitter Jack Dunn to fly out.
Sophomore Reagan Todd relieved for Lingos throwing 1.1 innings on one walk and no hits. Closer senior Eder Erives couldn’t find the strike zone as he walked the bases loaded, earned an out and then was pulled for Chaz Montoya. Montoya walked in a run before striking out the next two batters to earn his first Sun Devil save.
First Game Freshman nerves? None for Lyle Lin
The Taipei, Taiwan native began his Sun Devil career with a boom going 2-4 with a two RBI double that rocketed over the glove of NU’s Matt Hopner in Right field that gave the Sun Devils a 2-0 lead.
Not only did he put ASU ahead early, but he was the first Sun Devil to earn a hit this season as he chopped a roller between second and first in the second inning.
Though he lost the opening day catching job to fellow freshman Sam Ferri, Lin could work as an option for coach Tracy Smith at designated hitter as he’s already decided on Taylor Lane at first base, who sat out game one due to transfer rules.
It’s no wonder the former 16th round Seattle Mariners draft pick can swing it and he showed why on Friday. At the moment, he is listed beside Sebastian Zawada at the top of Arizona State’s DH depth chart. Zawada went 1-4 with a double.
Skipper Tracy Smith Continues Big Ten Dominance
The former Indiana (2006-14) and current ASU coach (since 2015) has yet to lose to a Big Ten opponent as a Sun Devil. With this win, Smith is 2-0 against the conference after outing Purdue 15-5 in February of 2015.
Against Northwestern specifically, in his Hoosier coaching career, Smith went against 15-11 all-time against the Wildcats and from 2009 and on he finished 11-4 not losing a series to NU from 2009 and on.
Smith ended his Big Ten coaching tenure in 2014 going 43-16 overall record and a bold 25-3 conference record. The skipper led Indiana to hosting an NCAA College World Series regional vs. Stanford and earned the Hoosiers the Big Ten’s first ever national seed in the NCAA Tournament.