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ASU Baseball: Devils sweep doubleheader with UC Davis

Two more wins

Brady Vernon/House of Sparky

Due to rain on Friday, Arizona State (6-0) and UC Davis (3-3) played a doubleheader on Saturday in Phoenix with ASU taking both games.

Game One: Devils rally late to win 3-2

For the first time all season, Arizona State didn’t score 10-plus runs, the game wasn’t decided before the ninth inning. Instead, for the first time in 2019, the Sun Devils had to find clutch hits to guide themselves to victory.

With only one run and six hits through seven innings, ASU looked for someone to ignite the bats. Redshirt sophomore catcher Sam Ferri led off with a single to start the eight. After a bunt from sophomore second baseman Drew Swift, sophomore left fielder Trevor Hauver had the chance to tie the game. He did just that with a blooper into shallow left field to score freshman Dusty Garcia, who pinch ran for Ferri.

Hauver himself scored as the game-winning run as junior designated hitter Lyle Lin hit a sacrifice fly to give ASU its first lead of the game. Freshman lefty Erik Tolman entered the game to shut the door on the Aggies and start ASU’s day off with a 3-2 win.

“It was nice to get a win like that and have to battle back. Their guy was doing a fantastic job at just pitching at the bottom of the zone,” head coach Tracy Smith said. “We found a way to grind that win out, those are always good to have. Just to see if you can stay with it.”

The offense came through when they needed to, but for most of the day struggled to produce anything. Hauver and sophomore shortstop Alika Williams had back-to-back leadoff doubles in the third and fourth. Neither were plated as UC Davis was able to get out of each jam.

The first ASU run was singled in by sophomore first baseman Spencer Torkelson in the sixth. Once again Torkelson performed with two outs to plate Swift, who singled and moved up to second on a wild pitch earlier in the frame.

The bats weren’t asked to do much for the Sun Devils with right-handed starter Alec Marsh’s work on Saturday. In his second start of the season, Marsh diced against the opposition. The righty went eight innings and allowed just two runs (one earned) on seven hits.

Marsh found himself in no real trouble until the fifth when a UC Davis double and single got itself on the board. The Aggies scored again in the sixth, but that was due to a groundball that ate up Gage Workman at third.

“Our offense kept telling me, ‘we’re going to get you here, we’re going to get you here, just get us back in.’ It’s all the focus was get us back in the dugout and get us another chance,” Marsh said.

After ASU took the lead, Marsh was set up for his second win of the season and after Tolman set down UC Davis in order, Marsh’s victory was earned. An excited Marsh leaped over the dugout railing to greet Tolman with an applause on the sealed win.

Game Two: ASU scores early and often versus UC Davis

The second time around, ASU wasted no time to get the bats rolling against the Aggies. The Sun Devils scored in four of the game’s first five innings en route to a 13-3 victory.

Lin had the highlight of another big night at the plate for the Sun Devils. Lin hit his first home run of the season, a grand slam in the fifth inning. It was the first grand slam for ASU since 2014 when Brian Serven hit one against Oklahoma State. Lin finished with six RBIs and three hits.

Junior designated hitter Myles Denson had himself a night in his first start of the season. Denson went 3-for-5 with a career-high three RBIs. Two of the runs he drove in were during ASU’s seven-run fifth inning to go with Lin’s grand slam.

“It always great to get out there, whether it’s a pinch hit, whether it’s a start, you got to take it seriously.” Denson said. “I’m trying to make the best of my opportunities. It was a good day, it was a good day overall for everybody.”

Eight of the nine ASU starters got hits in the second win over the Aggies. Junior center fielder Hunter Bishop added a solo home run for his second blast of the season. Torkelson also had another RBI to bring his season total to 14.

“What I like about this group is the guys are a threat one through nine,” Smith said. “Myles’ case tonight he got a spot start at DH, which is good for him, he earned it — here comes a guy that goes out and delivers.”

Right-handed sophomore Boyd Vander Kooi started on the bump in game two, Vander Kooi needed a bounce back effort after only going 3 23 innings in his last start against Notre Dame. The right went five for the Devils on Saturday, he allowed just two runs and five hits, while he struck out eight Aggie batters.

The Sun Devils will try for their second sweep of the season on Sunday when they take on UC Davis at 12:30 p.m.