Devils Stay Alive in World Series

The Arizona State Sun Devils were able to stay alive in the 59th College World Series, as they defeated the Tennessee Volunteers by a score of 4-2 on Sunday afternoon. After losing their first game on Friday, the Devils (40-24) returned to the diamond in the loser's bracket Sunday in an elimination game against the Volunteers (46-21). After trailing most of the game, ASU rallied to score three runs in the eighth inning to keep their national title hopes alive, and sent Tennessee packing.

Tennessee jumped out in front early off Sun Devil starter Erik Averill, as freshman All-American catcher J.P. Arencibia ripped a solo homerun in the bottom of the first to give the Vols a 1-0 lead. The homerun was Arencibia's 14th of the season, a Volunteer freshman record (the previous mark was 11 held by former Tennessee star Todd Helton). However, Averill would settle down over the next three innings, as he didn't allow another run until two consecutive Volunteer doubles in the bottom of the fifth that put the Vols up 2-0. Averill was pulled in the sixth with a runner on third and two men out in favor of right handed relief pitcher Pat Bresnehan.

Tennessee freshman starter James Adkins kept the Sun Devil bats quite for the most part. The Devils put at least one runner on base in every inning, but just failed to come up with the big hit when the opportunity presented itself. It wasn't until the seventh and eighth innings when the Devils finally got to Adkins. The Devils scored their first run in the top of the seventh on a two-out single by Junior All-American Travis Buck that scored freshman centerfielder J.J. Sferra from third. Sferra had led of the inning by getting on first after being hit by a pitch. Buck was 4-for-5 on the day including the big RBI that got the Devils bats going. The eighth inning started with a single by none other than Tuffy Gosewisch, who has been "Mr. Clutch" for ASU all season long.

Designated hitter Zechry Zinicola followed up Tuffy's hit with a single of his own that moved Gosewisch to third. With runners now on the corners senior third baseman Joey Hooft stepped to the plate. Hooft a senior transfer, who saw some CWS action as a member of the Miami Hurricanes, showed his experience by hitting a huge double down the line that took a nice hop over the first baseman's head to tie the game at two all. Hooft finished the game 2-for-3 with a run an RBI and two walks. Second baseman Seth Dhaenens then gave the Devils the lead with a double to left center that put the Devils on top 3-2. Sferra drove in the third and final run of the inning with a sacrifice fly that scored Hooft.

Pat Bresnehan pitched a perfect ninth inning to record his fifth win of the season, as he didn't allow a single run over the last 3.1 innings. Bresnehan (5-4) was masterful on the mound allowing just two hits. Averill pitched 5.2 innings, allowing two runs on eight hits while striking out three in the no-decision.

The Devils are now one step closer to a national championship, although the road won't be an easy one to travel. The Devils still face elimination this Tuesday when they battle the Nebraska Cornhuskers in a rematch that will send the loser home. The game is scheduled for a 1 p.m. CT start (11 a.m. PT) at Rosenblatt Stadium in Omaha, Nebraska.

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