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Sun Devils baseball tops Arkansas

March 11, 2008

Top ranked Arizona State remained unbeaten with a 6-5 victory over No. 19 Arkansas Tuesday night in front of a crowd of 3,048 at Winkles Field-Packard Stadium at Brock Ballpark. The Sun Devils are now 13-0, the second best start in school history.

Junior Ike Davis hit two solo home runs, including a game-tying blast to right center in the seventh, to lead the Sun Devil offense, and he also threw 1.2 shutout innings of relief to help preserve the victory.

Junior Marcel Champagnie got the scoring started with a solo home run in the second inning, and Davis hit his first homer of the game in the fourth to extend the lead to 2-0.

The Razorbacks cut the lead in half on Brett Eibner's RBI triple in the sixth, but the Sun Devils answered in the bottom half of the inning when junior Petey Paramore drove in two runs with a single to left.

Arkansas scored four runs in the seventh to take the lead for the first time. Senior Tommy Rafferty appeared to have the Sun Devils out of the inning with a potential double play ball, but sophomore Raoul Torrez's throwing error kept the inning alive, and Eibner made ASU pay with a two-run single to left that gave the Razorbacks a 5-4 lead.

Davis then tied the game with his second home run of the night, his fourth of the season, and Torrez made up for his earlier error with a two-out RBI single to right center.

"It feels good to be able to redeem myself, but I'm more thankful to my teammates for putting me in that spot," Torrez said.

Davis, sophomore Jason Jarvis and junior Stephen Sauer combined to shut out the Razorbacks in the eighth and ninth innings, with Sauer earning his first save of the season by striking out Arkansas leftfielder Casey Coon on three pitches.

Junior Reyes Dorado earned the win out of the bullpen and improved to 2-0 on the season. Sophomore Mike Leake went 6.1 innings, allowing eight hits and three earned runs while striking out seven, but he did not factor in the decision.

Davis was 3-4 at the plate and drove in two runs, while Paramore and Champagnie had two hits each.

The Sun Devils host Arkansas again tomorrow, with first pitch scheduled for 6:30 p.m.