The Arizona State baseball team’s attempt at a comeback late in their series opener against the No. 9 Oregon Ducks Friday was to no avail as they fell, 5-4.
Despite starting southpaw Brett Lilek’s career-high nine strikeouts, the Devils allowed two unearned runs, in accordance with three errors on the night, which ultimately led to their demise.
The Ducks struck first, plating two in the top of the second inning after shortstop Drew Stankiewicz muffed the grounder sent his way.
In the bottom of the second, left fielder Jake Peevyhouse singled, followed by right fielder Trever Allen’s double, the Devils’ only multi-base hit of the night. Catcher Brian Serven then singled to score them both, tying the game at two apiece.
The top of the fifth saw the remaining three Oregon runs, when third baseman Mitchell Tolman jacked a triple over the head of Peevyhouse, then crossed home after a throwing error by Stankiewicz.
Allen and Stankiewicz hit back-to-back singles to start the bottom of the sixth, and second baseman Tucker Esmay’s groundout eventually scored Allen, adding another run.
The Devils cut their deficit to one in the bottom of the eighth when Stankiewicz singled, moved into scoring position on a single by Serven and a fly out by Esmay, then scored after a grounder by center fielder Johnny Sewald was misplayed by Tolman.
RHP Jake Reed came in for the save in a perfect ninth inning. Ducks starting LHP Tommy Thorpe earned the win through five innings.
ASU moves to 24-21 on the season and 12-10 in the Pac-12. They take on Oregon again tomorrow for the second installment of the three-game series at 6:30 p.m. at Packard Stadium in Tempe.