Devils Win Series with Eighth Inning Rally

The 18th ranked Sun Devils did it again, as great pitching and another big inning earned them their third straight win, as they held off the 4th ranked Beavers 6-3. The win not only clinched the series for the Devils, but it put them just one game back of the Pac 10 leading Beavers (34-13, 11-6).

The win was also big since the Devils had lost their two previous conference series to the Bruins and the Cardinals. The Devils climbed to 32-16 overall and 10-7 in conference play. If the Devils can pull off the three game sweep, they'd be tied with the Beavers with just six more games remaining. The win was also big since the Devils had lost their two previous conference series to the Bruins and the Cardinals.

The Devils got another strong outing from their starting pitching. This time it was left-handed sophomore, Josh Satow, who led the Devils. Satow pitched seven strong innings, allowing just three runs on five hits, while striking out five. Satow wasn't involved in the decision, but he did keep the Devils in the ballgame against Beaver All-American Jonah Nickerson. Nickerson did a heck of a job himself, as he to lasted seven innings giving up just two runs on eight hits, while also striking out five. So, he must have felt pretty confident in handing the ball over to closer Kevin Gunderson with a 3-1 lead. Gunderson is considered by many to be the best closer in college baseball. He came into the game tied for the national lead with 15 saves, and an ERA under two. However, the Devils still had some fight left in them.

Trailing 3-1 going into the eighth, the Devils were down to their last six outs. Outfielder Ryan Sontag was called upon as a pinch-hitter to lead off the eighth. Sontag delivered by leading off with a single, which ended Nickerson's night. Gunderson was brought in to face outfielder and team captain Colin Curtis. Curtis cut the lead to just one run with a triple to the gap in left center. Utility man Eric Sogard followed up with a triple of his own down the right field line, which tied the score and put the go-ahead run just 90 feet away. The Devils then loaded the bases and with two men out it looked as if Gunderson might get out of the inning without too much damage being done. At least until second baseman, Seth Dhaenens, stepped to the plate.

Dhaenens delivered like he has so many times in his Sun Devil career, with a shot over the centerfielders head, which cleared the bases and gave the Devils a 6-3 lead. The Beavers made it interesting in the ninth, as they loaded the bases with two men out, before Sun Devil reliever, Brett Bordes, got Chris Kunda swinging to end the game. It was Bordes' fourth save of the season. Daryl Arreola picked up the win in relief for the Devils to improve his record to 2-1 on the year.

Today's game will be huge for both teams. A Sun Devil win would make the final two weekends very interesting for a few teams. Today's game will also see the unveiling of #9 and #12 out on the fence of Sun Devil baseball legends, as Sun Devil greats Alvin Davis and Kevin Romine will have their numbers retired today in a pre-game ceremony. First pitch is scheduled for 1 p.m., so remember the sun block and to arrive a little early if you want to catch the ceremony celebrating the careers of two Sun Devil greats.

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