April 23, 2006
Los Angeles - UCLA scored three runs in the bottom of the 10th inning down 10-8 on a two-run double by freshman Cody Decker and a game-winning RBI single by freshman Ryan Babineau to rally past No. 10 Arizona State for a thrilling 11-10 come-from-behind victory on Sunday afternoon at Jackie Robinson Stadium. The win improves UCLA to 23-16 overall and 7-5 in the Pac-10, while ASU drops to 28-14 overall and 7-5 in the Pac-10.
The Bruins rallied from behind four different times in the game in what turned out to be a wild five-hour long battle with the Sun Devils.
Senior Chris Jensen went 3-for-4 with two runs scored and a RBI, senior Brett McMillan went 3-for-4 with two doubles, a RBI and a run scored, and freshman Brandon Crawford went 2-for-5 with three runs scored.
Junior Tyson Brummett went 5.0 innings in the no-decision start with eight strikeouts.
Arizona State jumped out to an early 4-0 lead over UCLA in the top of the first inning. Colin Curtis hit a two-run home run to drive in leadoff hitter Ryan Sontag after he walked to give the Sun Devils a quick 2-0 lead. A RBI single by Ike Davis and a sacrifice fly by Frank Mesa put ASU up by four runs.
UCLA responded with two runs in the bottom of the first to cut the Sun Devil lead to 4-2. Crawford opened the set with a base hit through the left side, advanced to second on a wild pitch, and advanced to third on a ground out to second by freshman Jermaine Curtis. Jensen grounded out to shortstop to score Crawford from third and give the Bruins their first run of the game.
Junior Hector Ambriz reached on a walk with two outs. Senior Sean Smith then grounded to Mesa at third who threw the ball to second, but ASU second baseman Eric Sogard misplayed it to allow Smith to reach first and Ambriz to advance to third. Ambriz then scored on a wild pitch for UCLA's second run.
Junior Tyson Brummett would settle down to retire the next seven-consecutive Sun Devils with four strikeouts through the third inning.
UCLA put up a three spot on the scoreboard in the third inning to take a 5-4 lead. Crawford got things going again with a base hit to left center, followed by a Curtis single through the left side and a Jensen walk to load the bases with no outs. Ambriz then laced a single up the middle to score Crawford and Curtis to tie the game at 4-4. With one out, McMillan singled through the right side to score Jensen from third and give UCLA a one-run advantage.
The Bruins scored one run in the fourth inning but had a chance to score more. Babineau led off the inning with a walk, and Crawford reached on a fielder's choice to advance Babineau to second. Curtis reached on a sacrifice bunt attempt as Babineau was thrown out at third. Jensen then walked to load the bases with one out. Ambriz followed with a walk to score Crawford from third and give UCLA a 6-4 lead. Smith then grounded into a 6-4-3 double play to end the inning and the threat.
ASU went scoreless until the sixth inning as the Sun Devils scored three in the inning to take a 7-6 lead. Sontag nailed a RBI single to cut the lead to 6-5, and tied the game on a RBI double by Curtis. A sacrifice fly by Sogard gave ASU a one-run advantage.
UCLA battled for a run in the seventh inning to tie the game at 7-7. McMillan led off with a walk, and Eric Taylor, Jr. drew a pinch hit walk to give the Bruins two runners on. Senior Josh Roenicke followed with a slash base hit to left field to score McMillan from second and tie it up.
The Sun Devils took an 8-7 lead in the top of the ninth inning on a solo-home run by Ike Davis with a full count and one out.
UCLA would not go down in the ninth, as the Bruins rallied for a run to tie the game at 8-8. McMillan led the inning off with a double down the right field line to get things started. Freshman Eddie Murray pinch ran for McMillan, and freshman Tim Murphy drew a pinch hit walk to give UCLA runners at first and second. Roenicke laid down a sacrifice bunt to advance Murray to third and Murphy to second base. Babineau then grounded out to shortstop to score Murray to tie the game at 8-8 and send it into extra frames.
Roenicke came in from center field to pitch the 10th inning for the Bruins, and would allow the Sun Devils to load the bases with no outs. Arizona State took a 10-8 lead on a two-run single up the middle by Sogard.
The Bruins would not quit and rallied once again in the 10th inning. Jensen led off the inning with a double to left field, and freshman Blair Dunlap drew a walk to put runners at first and second. Smith then laid down a bunt single to load the bases with no outs. Freshman Cody Decker then nailed a clutch pinch hit double to left field to score Jensen and Dunlap and tie the game at 10-10. Murphy was intentionally walked to reload the bases with no outs. Roenicke flied out to right field, but the ball was not deep enough to tag on.
With the bases loaded and one out, Babineau hit a do-or-die ground ball to Mesa at third base to score Smith from third and drive in the game-winning run.
UCLA will next host UC Santa Barbara on Tuesday, April 25 at Jackie Robinson Stadium. Game time is set for 6 p.m.