Trojans Take Care of Business, Defeat Arizona State 7-4 to Take the Series|
March 26, 2017
LOS ANGELES -- In an all-around team victory, the Trojans took advantage of a four-run fourth inning to propel themselves to a 7-4 victory over Arizona State on Sunday afternoon, taking the series 2-1.
Lars Nootbaar (El Segundo, Calif./El Segundo HS) keyed up a big two-out, two RBI double in the fourth inning, while Corey Dempster (South Pasadena, Calif./Loyola HS) extended his hitting streak to 10 games with a 2-for-4, one RBI day. David Edson (Las Vegas, Nev./Faith Lutheran HS) also connected for two hits on the day.
The Sun Devils got on the board first, tagging up USC starter Marrick Crouse (Dana Point, Calif./Dana Hills HS) for one run, but he was able to minimize the damage, keeping it to just one.
The Trojans answered right back in the bottom of the first. With runners on the corners, the game-tying run came home from third on a wild pitch.
In the third the Trojans once again made things happen on the base paths. Tyler Pritchard (Lake Elsinore, Calif./Temescal Valley HS) led off the inning with a walk, advanced to second on a groundout and stole third. After Frankie Rios (Lakewood, Calif./Long Beach Poly HS) drew his first of two walks on the day, that was the end of the day for Sun Devil starter Spencer Van Scoyoc. With new pitcher Reagan Todd on the mound, Pritchard came home on a passed ball to give the Trojans a 2-1 lead.
However, the Sun Devils answered back with a run of their own in the fourth inning, as Gage Canning came through with an RBI double.
The Trojans pushed ahead with a huge four-run bottom of the fourth inning, which proved to be the difference in the game. First with the bases loaded and two down, Rios drew his second walk of the day to bring home the go-ahead run. Then with the bases still loaded, Nootbaar came through with a big two-out double, plating two runs. A third run scored on a throwing error by the catcher as they tried to get Nootbaar at second.
With a 6-2 lead, the Trojans headed to the fifth inning, but starter Crouse ran into some trouble, hitting the first batter of the inning and walking the next. That was the end of the day for Crouse, as he was lifted for reliever Solomon Bates (Victorville, Calif./Oak Hills HS). Bates got one out on a fielder's choice, but a single by ASU's Lyle Lin plated one more for the Sun Devils to make it a 6-3 game. Bates was able to lock down after that however, throwing two complete innings, holding the Sun Devils to just two hits with one walk and one strikeout to earn his first collegiate win.
Sophomore lefthander Quentin Longrie (Mission Viejo, Calif./JSerra HS) threw a scoreless top of the seventh and the Trojans added one more in the bottom of the seventh as Dempster double plated a run.
With the score 7-3, the Trojans brought in freshman lefty Austin Manning (Oakdale, Calif./Oakdale HS) to finish of the game. After a scoreless eighth, he ran into some trouble in the ninth, as Andrew Snow doubled to lead off the inning, and a Hunter Bishop single put runners on the corners with nobody out. A fielder's choice plated a fourth run for the Sun Devils, but Manning locked in to hold onto the game for the Trojans.
The Trojans have now won back-to-back Pac-12 series to open conference play. They will be back in action on Tuesday, March 28 as they host San Diego State at 6 p.m. PT at Dedeaux Field.