Close Win Earns Sweep for the Maroon and Gold

The #17 Arizona State Sun Devils successfully pulled of the sweep of the Penn State Nittany Lions today, by defeating them 9-7 to wrap up their last non-conference series before starting Pac-10 play.

The Sun Devils looked good early, scoring four runs in the bottom of the second to erase a 1-0 deficit. The Devils scored two more in the third and it looked as if they might run away with the game early on. However, Penn State (4-16) didn't go down without a fight. The Nittany Lions battled back to tie things at six with a five-run fifth inning, only to allow a run in the bottom of the inning that gave the Devils the lead again. The Lions tied it up again by scoring a run in the top of the sixth, but the Devils bats proved to be too much for the Lions to overcome, as the Devils added two runs in the seventh to secure the sweep.

Junior right-hander, Pat Bresnehan, got the start for the Devils tonight, his first since injuring his rib a few weeks ago. Bresnehan, started out solid, but the rust wasn't entirely gone, as Bresnehan allowed four runs in the fifth to end his day early. Bresnehan ended up pitching four and one-third innings, giving up five runs (three earned), on six hits, and two walks, while striking out five. Junior right-hander, Matt Trink, picked up the win in relief for the Devils. Trink (2-0), pitched two innings, allowing one run on one hit and a walk to pick up his second win of the year. Closer, Zechry Zinicola, picked up his fifth save on the year. Zinicola pitched the final two innings without yielding a run on two hits and a walk, while striking out two.

Offensively, freshman DH, Ike Davis, was the man once again. Davis blasted his team high fifth homerun to lead off the bottom of the second inning. The solo shot to centerfield, sparked a four run inning for the Devils. Davis finished the game 2-for-5 with a run and a RBI. Junior outfielder, Colin Curtis, came through again as well, going 2-for-5 with a RBI from the leadoff spot. Junior infielder, Seth Dhaenens, also recorded a multi-hit game, going 2-for-3 with three runs and a RBI including a double. Freshman shortstop, Matt Hall, and junior third baseman, C.J. Retherford, also recorded a multi-hit game. Both players recorded two hits on the day, while also scoring a run and driving in a run.

Leftfielder Ryan Sontag, had just one hit in the game, but it was a big one. Sontag's two-run double in the bottom of the seventh, proved to be the game winning runs. Sontag, who won the Big-10 Freshman of the Year award last year, as a member of the Michigan State Spartans, continued to punish Big-10 competition. Sontag finished the series 4-for-9 with five RBI's and a run scored in just two games.

The Devils will travel to Pullman, Washington this week, to begin Pac-10 play with a three game series against the Washington State Cougars. Play begins on Thursday with a 6 p.m. first pitch. The Cougars are currently 20-6 on the year, and have already taken two out of the three games against the Stanford Cardinals this weekend (game three is scheduled for Monday).

The Devils return to the Valley Sunday, to face the Cats from down south, in the first ever Challenge at the Chase. The game will be played at Chase Field (formerly Bank One Ballpark), and is scheduled for a 5 p.m. first pitch.

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