Feb. 18, 2007
SURPRISE, Ariz. - After six straight losses, dating back to 2005, at Surprise Stadium, the Arizona State Sun Devils were finally able to find the win column in the Coca-Cola Classic, beating Gonzaga 9-2. With the win, ASU improves to 7-3 on the year and finishes the Coca-Cola Classic 1-2.
ASU's offense would get on the board in the bottom of the first inning when Brett Wallace led off the inning with a walk then stole second base. Ike Davis brought him home with a single up the middle that made it 1-0 Devils. That single ended an 0-12 drought for Davis. Wallace made it 2-0 in the second inning when his base hit up the middle brought home Joe Persichina, who had doubled earlier in the inning.
Arizona State pushed it to 3-0 after Wallace reached on a fielder's choice with the bases loaded, scoring Persichina. A balk by Gonzaga's Clayton Mortenson brought Sontag home and made it 4-0. Eric Sogard then laced a single to right, scoring Wallace from second to make it 5-0.
Kiel Roling put another run on the board in the bottom of the eighth with his third home run of the season. The ball landed just above the grassy area in left field. The Devils would put it out of reach, scoring three more times in the inning to make it 9-1. Gonzaga would score in the top of the ninth, but it was too little too late for the Bulldogs.
Brian Flores got the start on the hill for ASU after starting against Missouri on Thursday night in Tempe. Pitching with a pitch count limit, he went three innings, allowing only one hit and walking a man while not allowing a run. Mike Leake came on in relief of Flores and was once again brilliant, throwing the final six innings, allowing four hits and two runs to pick up his third win of the season.
Brett Wallace, Joe Persichina and Mike Leake all earned All-Tournament honors. Earlier in the afternoon, Oregon State defeated Missouri 9-2. The Sun Devils now return to Tempe to host UAB in a three-game set. First pitch on Friday night is set for 7 p.m. at Winkles Field-Packard Stadium at Brock Ballpark.