Arizona State baseball built on its opening game offensive progress Saturday night to beat Hawaii 9-6 for a doubleheader sweep and series win.
ASU (4-2) won the opener 6-5 thanks to a dramatic two-run inside the park homer by Hunter Haas in the eighth inning. That momentum carried over in game 2 with a two-homer, four-run second inning and with five more runs after Hawaii (1-2) took a 5-4 lead in the fourth at Phoenix Municipal Stadium.
Haas said after a 3-2 loss Friday that coach Tracy Smith “talked about playing to win. That’s all we wanted to do today. Whenever Hawaii scored, we wanted to jump right back on top. That was huge to emphasize we weren’t going to go away and let them have one,” in the Saturday opener.
Sean McLain described Haas’ homer as electric and the “most exciting moment we’ve had this season for sure.” Smith said Haas’ heroics had “a calming effect. It allowed guys to relax at the plate. That was a huge one for us for sure.”
Erik Tolman, ASU’s nightcap starter, did not have his usual control, walking three and hitting three in 3 1/3 innings. After Brock Peery was ineffective, true freshman Jared Glenn (1-0) stabilized the game with 3 2/3 innings of three-hit pitching. Brady Corrigan retired six straight batters over the final two innings for a save.
“Erik is a good pitcher, it’s going to happen,” Smith said. “You know that as a coach, he’s not going to be perfect all the time. Jared Glenn shut down an inning that was going south in a hurry, and he grew up tonight. Brady Corrigan hasn’t been on the mound yet for us (this season). Those guys being ready to go was the key to this thing tonight.”
ASU had a season high 14 hits in the nightcap after nine in the opener, scoring a combined 15 runs after nine in their first four games. Drew Swift, Haas, Sam Ferri, McLain and Kade Higgins had two hits each in game 2 with Joe Lampe driving in three runs.
Lampe hit a two-run homer down the right field line in the second immediately followed by a Swift homer to left.
Hawaii left fielder Naighel Calderson, who stayed in after pinch running, committed two errors that opened the door to ASU’s game-clinching three-run seventh.
“It takes that one big hit or comeback win to prove to the team we can do it what we did today,” Corrigan said. “We took a lot of momentum into game 2, Jared got us to the eighth then from there we locked it down. It was a great team win.”
ASU is at home against Nevada (3-3) at 1 p.m. Tuesday before a non-conference series against Utah starting Friday. Nevada first plays UNLV on Sunday.
ASU baseball evens Hawaii series on Hunter Haas inside the park home run
Arizona State true freshman Hunter Haas turned a drive off the center field wall into a two-run inside the park home run Saturday for the winning runs in a 6-4 victory over Hawaii.
ASU (3-2) evened the series at Phoenix Municipal Stadium with its highest scoring game (three was the previous high). The teams play again Saturday night in the rubber game.
Hawaii led 2-1 and 3-2 then pulled even at 4-4 in the seventh.
With two outs in the ASU eighth, Drew Swift singled then, on the first pitch to Haas, advanced to third on a wild pitch and catcher throwing error.
Haas then teed off on a 1-0 pitch from Jake Hymel (0-1), who gave up six hits and four runs in his three innings. He ran through a late stop sign rounding third but still scored around catcher Konnor Palmeira.
Hawaii led off the ninth with a pinch hit double. Ethan Long replaced Justin Fall (1-0) on the mound, giving up an RBI single then closing the door on the Warriors (1-1) for his first college save.
Tyler Thornton worked 5 2/3 innings as ASU’s starting pitcher followed by Cam Dennie, Fall and Long.
Swift, Haas and Hunter Jump each had two hits at the top of a revised ASU batting order that included Brian Kalmer at designated hitter and Jack Moss at first base.
ASU baseball loses Cooper Benson early, falls late to Hawaii
Arizona State baseball pulled starting pitcher Cooper Benson after the first inning Friday night due to an apparent injury issue and lost 3-2 to Hawaii despite more strong relief pitching.
ASU coach Tracy Smith had no post-game report on Benson or on pitcher Boyd Vander Kooi, who threw just 2/3 of an inning last week.
The Sun Devils (2-2) led 2-0 after two innings at Phoenix Municipal Stadium but like a week earlier against Sacramento State could not close out the game. Hawaii scored in the fifth, seventh and ninth to win its season opener.
ASU redshirt freshman Christian Bodlovich threw four innings after Benson’s surprise exit, giving up two hits and one run and strike out four. Graham Osman (0-1) followed for 3.1 innings.
Hawaii starting pitcher Aaron Davenport settled down to throw seven innings and keep the Warriors close enough to pull out a victory. Austin Teixeira pitched two scoreless innings for the win.
Alex Baeza went 2-of-3 including a solo home run in the fifth and score all of Hawaii’s runs.
Highlights of the game
Hawaii scored the tying run in the seventh on an Osman wild pitch.
In the ninth, first baseman Nate Baez and Osman failed to handle a Baeza ground ball properly. Osman was charged with an error for missing the bag off Baeza’s throw. Then on a sac bunt, third baseman Hunter Haas threw to first for an out when he seemingly had a force play on Baeza at second.
Tyler Best popped a single to center, advancing Baeza to third, where he was able to score on an Aaron Ujimori sacrifice fly.
Quotes of the game
“We’re missing signs and doing some things we shouldn’t be doing from a mental state and also in execution we’re getting ourselves out. Our offense is going to come, it’s better than it is right now. When you struggle scoring runs, you can’t play the way we did defensively. If we take care of the baseball, we still win that game. We were victims of our own doing tonight, and it cost us.” — ASU coach Tracy Smith
“Our identity as a team is grit and grinding out at-bats. If we keep that going, we’re going to have a good year.” — ASU shortstop Drew Swift
“This team needs to learn how to win. I’m just disappointed in how we gave that one away. We gave them the second run with a wild pitch and gave them the third run. We have to address the mistakes we made but also have a short memory because we have 18 innings tomorrow. Our mindset can’t be on something we can’t change.” — ASU coach Tracy Smith
ASU and Hawaii will play a doubleheader Saturday with games at 2 p.m. and 6:30. Tyler Thornton and Erik Tolman are ASU’s projected starting pitchers vs. Hawaii’s Cade Halemanu and Logan Pouelsen.
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