Bats Awaken to Earn Split of Wildcats

One day after getting shut down by Kansas State pitching, the Sun Devils' bats arose and recorded a season high 18 hits en route to a 12-1 rout of Kansas State at Surprise Stadium, giving lefty Josh Spence a win in his return from a scary injury.

Wildcat starter Lance Hoge didn't have the same success that Tuesday starter AJ Morris had against the Devils, as ASU (12-2) got to the left right away in the first, thanks to Carlos Ramirez.

Pat Murphy shook up his lineup a bit and newly placed leadoff hitter Kole Calhoun singled to start the inning and Jason Kipnis followed with a bunt single to set up Ramirez. The catcher connected for his seventh home run of the season to put ASU up 3-0 before Hoge could record an out.

The Wildcats (11-3) got to ASU starter Matt Newman in the second, but it wasn't Newman's fault. Once again the Devils allowed an unearned run thanks to an error by shortstop Drew Maggi that allowed Drew Biery to reach and advance to second with one out. After a flyout, Rob Vaughn made it 3-1 with a two-out RBI single to right.

Newman was pulled in the fourth after hitting a batter and allowing a single to start the inning. Josh Spence made his first appearance since taking a line drive off the face against Missouri just over a week ago. The lefty worked out of the inning and didn't allow a run.

ASU added insurance runs in the 7th. Matt Newman walked to lead off and advanced to second on a single by Mike Leake. Riccio Torrez drove both of them home with a triple to right center field to make it 5-1 Devils. ASU left Riccio Torrez stranded on third after Raoul Torrez struck out swinging and pinch hitter Jared McDonald went down looking.

ASU blew the game wide open in the 8th, starting with Kole Calhoun leading off with his second home run of the season. Jason Kipnis walked, stole second, advanced to third on a wild pitch and scored on a single by Ramirez.

A Matt Newman single and a walk to Leake loaded the bases for Jordan Swagerty who hit a ball that was misplayed by K-State second basemen Carter Jurica that allowed everybody to be safe and make it 7-1.

The Torrez Brothers than helped ASU's cause, first younger brother Riccio doubled in two runs and then Raoul reached on an infield single that scored Swagerty. Jason Kipnis capped the inning with an RBI single of this own.

Matt Newman allowed four hits and just one unearned run in his three innings of work. Josh Spence picked up the victory for ASU in his return to the mound. The Australian picked up right where he left off, striking out five in four innings and not allowing a run.

Kole Calhoun worked 2/3 of an inning before his own error on a dropped fly ball caused him to be removed for Jordan Swagerty who pitched the final 1 1/3.

ASU improves to 12-2 on the season and will stay in Surprise to take on the Kansas Jayhawks, opening a three game set on Friday. The game will get underway one hour after the spring training game concludes on Friday.

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