TEMPE, Ariz. - TNo. 15 Arizona State had the winning run up to bat in the eighth inning and brought the tying run to the plate in the ninth, but could not capitalize as they fell to Arizona, 10-7, in the Territorial Cup game on Friday night in front of a season high 4,105 fans at Packard Stadium in Tempe, Ariz.
The Sun Devils (33-16-1, 14-11) fell behind by nine runs after the top of the third inning, but scored a pair of runs in both the fourth and fifth innings, and added to three in the eighth to cut its deficit to three, 10-7.
Left fielder Jake Peevyhouse, third baseman Michael Benjamin and second baseman James McDonald each knocked in an RBI in the eighth before a two-out walk to catcher Max Rossiter loaded the bases and brought the winning run up to bat. Desginated hitter Nate Causey hit a deep fly ball, but Arizona center fielder Johnny Field made a diving grab to end the Devils' rally.
Right fielder Trever Allen and shortstop Drew Stankiewicz drew consecutive walks to start the bottom of the ninth inning, but ASU made three straight outs to strand the runners and end the game.
Benjamin went 2-for-5 with three RBI and a two-run homer and Peevyhouse added a pair of RBI to lead the way for the Devils. Benjamin has now recorded multiple hits in each of his past seven games and leads the team with 24 on the season.
The Wildcats (30-20, 11-14) jumped out to an early lead after a fielding error by shortstop Drew Stankiewicz with two outs in the top of the first allowed two runs to score, and then a three-run double by third baseman Brandon Dixon highlighted a six-run second inning for Arizona as they brought 10 batters to the plate and extended their advantage to eight, 8-0.
Dixon added one run in the third on an RBI single before Benjamin hit a two-run homer in the bottom of the third inning to put ASU on the board, 9-2, after Peevyhouse took a leadoff walk.
Consecutive two-out RBI singles by Peevyhouse and Coffman brought the Devils within five, 9-4, in the bottom of the fifth inning.
UA added one run in the top of the sixth on an RBI single by designated hitter Jordan Berger to make it 10-2 in their favor.
Starting right-hander Trevor Williams (5-6) struck out four in six innings, but gave up 10 runs, including six earned, on 12 hits to take the loss. He allowed just one run on two hits over his final three innings before he was replaced by right-hander Darin Gillies in the seventh.
Gillies conceded one hit in 1 1/3 scoreless innings and left-hander Matt Dunbar allowed just two base runners in his 1 2/3 innings.
Arizona starting right-hander Konner Wade (5-6) earned the win after giving up six runs, including four earned, on nine hits in seven innings. Left-hander Tyler Crawford (1) registered his first save of the season with a scoreless ninth inning.
The Sun Devils take on Arizona for game two of its three-game Territorial Cup set Saturday at 6:30 p.m. at Packard Stadium. The contest will be broadcast by Tim Healey (@TimHealeyASU) and former Sun Devil baseball star Seth Dhaenens (@sethdhaenens) on the MidFirst Bank Sun Devil IMG Sports Network on NBC Sports Radio AM 1060 and on the All-Access Player at thesundevils.com. It will also be broadcast on Sirius XM Radio on channel 91. Fans can also follow the team on Twitter at @ASU_Baseball for live scoring and updates from the weekend, and check thesundevils.com for stats, notes and more.
The Sun Devils have registered double-digit hits in14of the past 17 games and 32 total games this season...ASU knocked in four of its seven runs with two outs and has scored 112 of 283 runs with two outs this season.