Huskers Humbled, ASU Advances in NCAA Tourney

Josh Satow took the mound with a chance to send ASU to the Super Regionals and the Nebraska Cornhuskers home. Despite giving up two first-inning runs on what head coach Pat Murphy phrased "Ugly" hits, Satow settled down just enough and relied on the nation's leading offense to knock off the Cornhuskers 19-7 as the maroon and gold look forward to hosting Mississippi in Tempe this weekend.

After defeating UC-Riverside in the first game of the day, 11-1, the Cornhuskers had the unenviable task of facing the top offense in nation and being forced to do it with a depleted pitching staff. Starting pitcher Thad Weber, a right handed junior, was making his first start of the season for Nebraska and failed to record more than one out in the first inning as the short lived Nebraska lead was immediately lost.

"You have got to give credit to what ASU is doing." Head coach Mike Anderson said. ‘Their offense is the best we have seen in the country - they are pretty dynamic."

The Devils' explosive offense was able to jump all over Weber, despite leadoff hitter Tim Smith failing to get a hit. After the Smith at-bat, things began to fall in to place for the hosts. Brett Wallace earned a walk and Eric Sogard singled to bring up Kiel Roling, who took the 1-2 offering from Weber over the right field fence to immediately turn the 2-0 deficit into a 3-2 advantage.

The offenses traded blows throughout the game and by the time the seventh inning rolled around the Devils held a moderately comfortable 9-4 lead. Then things got interesting.

Nebraska plated three runs and was threatening for more with runners on second and third with nobody out when Murphy called on his stopper, freshman Jason Jarvis. "Jarvis took control of the game again." Murphy said. "Once he came in the game it was over from there and it gave us a bunch of confidence."

After Jarvis retired the next three Huskers in order, the vaunted Devil offense went to work.

The first three batters all reached base off of sophomore left hander, Dan Jennings who was then relieved by Zach Herr and things did not go well for him. CJ Retherford stepped to the plate, taking the Herr offering over the wall in left field for the game breaking grand slam – his second home run of the season, all in the Tempe Regional.

"I wasn't trying to hit a home run," Retherford said, "I was trying to hit to right-center."

Murphy phrased it as "bad aim" but for Retherford and the Devils it opened the flood gates in the seventh inning and before the frame concluded, eight straight batters reached base and 11 runners were sent to the plate. Six runs were scored in the seventh inning to stretch the slim two-run lead to eight and ASU added on four more runs to the total in the eighth inning to get to the 19-7 margin of victory.

With the win, ASU moves on to the Super Regionals – which they also will host – against Mississippi who comes out of the Oxford Regional. As of now, the days and times for the three-game set haven't been announced.

"Mississippi has been in big environments before." Murphy said. "They feature great pitching with two guys that throw 95 miles per hour."

Mississippi has been to the Super Regionals the past two seasons.

P – Mike Leake, ASU
P – Brian Flores, ASU
1B – Andrew Brown, Nebraska
2B – Eric Sogard, ASU
3B – Craig Corriston, Nebraska
SS – Andrew Romine, ASU
OF – Ike Davis, ASU
OF – Carl Uhl, UC-Riverside / Kyle Messineo, Monmouth (tie)
OF – Andy Gerch, Nebraska
DH – Kiel Roling, ASU

Most Outstanding Player – Mike Leake, P, ASU

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