February 14, 1998
TEMPE, Ariz. -- For the second night in a row, the eighth inning proved to the deciding factor in a Washington State loss. Two eighth inning runs on three Cougar errors gave #6 Arizona State a come-from-behind 6-5 win Saturday night in front of 1,286 fans at Packard Stadium.
Washington State (2-3) starter Wade Parrish threw five innings of shut-out ball, before yielding three runs to the Sun Devils (10-2) in the sixth inning. He struck out four, while giving up six hits in six innings of work. Les McTavish (0-1) was solid in his two innings of relief, but was credited with the loss. Four WSU errors allowed two unearned runs to cross the plate. Boyd Robertson led the charge at the plate for the Cougs going 1-for-4, including a three-run bases loaded double in the seventh inning. Freshman Jason Grove was 2-for-4 and connected on his first collegiate home run.
ASU starter Phill Lowery gave up an early run to Washington State in the first, but settled down over the next five innings. Lowery took the no-decision, while giving up three runs in six innings on the mound. Aaron Kramer (1-0) pitched the last two innings for ASU, allowing only one hit to earn his first victory of the season. Mikel Moreno led ASU at the plate going 2-for-4 with a two-run home run. Left fielder Willie Bloomquist also added two hits in the Sun Devils 10th win.
The Cougars jumped out to an early 1-0 lead in the first. Lead-off hitter Shawn Stevenson stretched his hitting streak to five games with a single to right field. He advanced to second on a Lowery balk, and later scored on a ground-out by Robertson. Arizona State finally got on the board in the fifth inning, scoring three runs to take the lead 3-1. Two consecutive doubles off Parrish, and a two-run home run by Moreno accounted for the Sun Devil Scoring.
Two quick singles by Grove and catcher Jeff Scherer in the seventh chased Lowery from the game, and started the comeback for WSU. Sun Devil Head Coach Pat Murphy handed Chuck Crampton the ball with two Cougars on base. Shawn Stevenson walked, and with the bases loaded Robertson doubled down the left field line to tie the game at four.
Grove's home run to left center field gave Washington State a 5-4 lead going into the ASU half of the eighth inning. With McTavish on the mound, the eighth inning jinx from the Friday's game re-emerged in the Cougars fielding. With the score tied 5-5, Shawn Stevenson bobbled a ground ball, and Jeff Phelps beat out the throw to push across the Sun Devils go-ahead run. In the eighth Arizona State scored two runs, on one hit, and three Cougar errors to clinch the win. Kramer ended any thoughts of a WSU rally, striking out Stevenson and Scott Randall to end the game.
The three game series will conclude tomorrow with a 12 p.m. game at Packard Stadium. Todd Meldahl (0-1) is expected to take the mound for the Cougars against Jay Gehrke (2-0) of Arizona State.
WSU 1 0 0 0 0 0 3 1 0 - 5 8 4 ASU 0 0 0 0 3 1 0 2 x - 6 7 1 Wade Parrish, Les McTavish (7), and Jeff Scherer. Phill Lowery, Chuck Crumpton (7), Aaron Kramer, and Jeremy Jones. W - Kramer (1-0); L - McTavish (0-1) ; S - None , HR - Moreno (3), Grove (1). T -2:32 ; A - 1,286. WSU Hits - Stevenson, Robertson, Curran 2, Mitchell, Grove 2, Scherer. ASU Hits - Moreno 2, Bloomquist 2, Myers, Gosewisch, Phelps. E - Stevenson 2, Robertson, Scherer, Gosewisch. 2B - Robertson, Curran, Bloomquist, Phelps, Gosewisch. 3B - None.