Four-Peat! Devils achieve Pac-10 record

The Pac-10 is one of the best baseball conferences in the country and features some of NCAA Baseball's greatest programs of all-time. That is just one of the many reasons why what ASU accomplished on Saturday all the more impressive.

Riding a two homer day from sophomore Drew Maggi and a great effort out of the bullpen from freshman Brady Rodgers, No. 2 ASU knocked off Stanford 8-6 in its regular season finale to clinch the Pac-10 championship outright.

It is ASU's fourth straight conference title, something that no other Pac-10 team has ever accomplished.

With the win, ASU won the series, its first series win in Palo Alto since 1997. The Sun Devils only lost one series during the 2010 regular season, which was in April against Washington St.

The 47 regular season wins are the most from an ASU (47-8, 20-7 Pac-10) team since 2003, when they won 50.

Maggi connected for his first home run of the day in the first inning off of Stanford starter Dean McArdle to put the Sun Devils up 1-0.

Stanford's Adam Gaylord answered with his first home run of the season, a two run shot off of ASU starter Jake Borup in the second to put the Cardinal (31-23, 14-13) up 2-1.

Another Maggi home run in the third evened the score at 2-2. The sophomore shortstop entered the game with just two home runs in his career and hit one in each of his first two at bats on Saturday.

The homers continued to fly out of Sunken Diamond for the Sun Devils as Riccio Torrez connected for his ninth of the season in the fourth, a two-run shot that put ASU up 4-2.

The Cardinal got to Borup in the bottom of the fourth inning, scoring three runs to regain the lead.

After a one out walk, back-to-back singles from Jake Schlander and Jake Stewart plated a run to cut it to 4-3. An error by Zack MacPhee allowed another run to score and Colin Walsh capped the inning with a sacrifice fly.

The game stayed that way until the seventh inning, when a Stanford error ignited a two-out rally from the Sun Devils.

With two away, Raoul Torrez reached on a throwing error by the shortstop Schlander. Xorge Carrillo followed with a base hit and Maggi then reached on an infield single to load the bases.

MacPhee then sent a base hit into right that scored two and put ASU up for good at 6-5. Deven Marrero added an RBI single in the eighth that proved to be a big insurance run later in the game.

Meanwhile on the mound, Rodgers entered the game to start the fifth inning and worked a perfect fifth, sixth and seventh.

Stanford's Ben Clowe broke through with a base hit off Rodgers to start the ninth, but Rodgers answered back with a strikeout. After another error by MacPhee that allowed Eric Smith to reach, ASU head coach Tim Esmay turned to Mitchell Lambson out of the bullpen.

Lambson walked Jonathon Kaskow to load the bases, but worked out of the inning by just allowing a sacrifice fly that cut the ASU lead to 7-6.

Riccio Torrez's two-out, RBI double in the ninth scored MacPhee and gave closer Jordan Swagerty an extra run to work with in the bottom of the ninth.

With two outs, a passed ball put the tying run at second base, but Swagerty got Kenny Diekroeger to strike out swinging to end the game.

Rodgers worked 3.1 innings of scoreless baseball and allowed just one hit and an unearned run to pick up his fourth win of the season. Borup allowed three earned runs in four innings.

Maggi and Riccio Torrez each finished with three hits for ASU and Carrillo added two hits.

ASU will now await the selection show to find out its postseason fate. The Sun Devils will more than likely host a regional starting next weekend. The regional host sites are announced on Sunday, with the NCAA Selection Show airing on Monday morning.


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