Trojans Fall 6-5 to No. 15 Arizona State in Weekend Series Rubber Match|
April 14, 2013
LOS ANGELES - The USC baseball team battled late, putting the potential winning run on base in the ninth but was unable to bring it around and dropped game three of the weekend series to visiting No. 15 Arizona State 6-5 Sunday at Dedeaux Field.
The Trojans (13-22, 6-9) had an opportunity to tie the game in the seventh, loading the bases with one out down by two runs. Leadoff hitter Bobby Stahel (Needles, Calif./Palos Verdes HS) appeared to pull the Trojans to within one keeping the bases loaded when he was hit by a pitch, but the plate umpire brought Stahel back to the plate, calling the pitch a strike. Stahel then did cut the deficit to one, as he hit the next pitch into deep center for a sac fly, but that would be as close as the Trojans would get.
Trojan starter Kyle Twomey (Placentia, Calif./El Dorado HS) worked around a two-out walk and a single to put up a zero in the first but was chased after two, as the visiting Sun Devils (22-10-1, 8-7) strung together four consecutive hits after a leadoff walk and an error to build an early 5-0 lead. Kyle Davis (Garden Grove, Calif./Pacifica HS) came in for Twomey in the third, limiting the Sun Devils to a single run over four innings of relief. Davis finished the day allowing only the one run on two hits and one walk, while striking out three.
The Trojan bats had a difficult time in the first half of the game, going hitless through the first four innings but broke through in the fifth, as Blake Lacey (Clovis, Calif./Clovis HS) drew a one-out walk, stole second base and came around to score on the two-out single by Timmy Robinson (Huntington Beach, Calif./Ocean View HS) that broke up the no-hitter. Garrett Stubbs (Del Mar, Calif./Torrey Pines HS) then reached on an errant throw from the catcher on a dropped third strike that scored Robinson, and Turner Clouse (/) put runners at the corners with two outs. Stahel then drove in two more with a double down the left field line that put the score at 6-4 after five complete.
Davis then worked a 1-2-3 sixth, and Nigel Nootbaar (El Segundo, Calif./El Segundo HS) threw three innings of scoreless relief, allowing one walk, two hits and striking out five.
The Trojans loaded the bases with one out in the seventh before the controversial strike call on the 3-1 pitch that hit Stahel. His sac fly put the score at 6-5, but that would be as close as the Trojans would get, as a ninth inning rally fell short.
The Trojans return to action Tuesday afternoon at Loyola Marymount before resuming conference play next weekend against Utah in Salt Lake City.