03/15 - Arizona State takes series from Tulane - East Valley Tribune: Sports

03/15 - Arizona State takes series from Tulane

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Posted: Sunday, March 14, 2004 11:41 pm | Updated: 4:52 pm, Thu Oct 6, 2011.

The little things added up to a 5-1 Arizona State victory Sunday that gave the Sun Devils the weekend series against Tulane.

"We had a lot of team baseball," said Nick Walsh, ASU's senior second baseman. "It's good to see. It's winning baseball. You're not going to often hit bombs."

A quartet of pitchers limited the 11th-ranked Green Wave to six hits before 3,005 at Packard Stadium.

ASU scored single runs in the third and fourth on sacrifice flies by Walsh and Nick Cadena. A hit-and-run single by Joe Persichina put Colin Curtis at third before Cadena's fly ball to right.

The eighth-ranked Sun Devils (17-3) maintained a 2-0 lead going into the seventh.

"It was an intense game," a tired Walsh said. "It was very important for us to win the (three-game) series. We played bad the first night (a 5-3 ASU loss on Friday)."

The Green Wave (12-5) got a run in the seventh on Brian Bormaster's two-out infield single, but reliever Travis Webb retired Brian Bogusevic, stranding two runners.

ASU then knocked starter Cory Hahn (3-1) out of the game in the bottom of the inning.

Shortstop Dustin Pedroia lined a two-out RBI double to left, and Walsh followed with an opposite-field double to left center off reliever Joey Charron. "He had hung a couple of curveballs to me (Saturday), and he hung another one," Walsh said. "Fortunately, I hit it where they weren't.

"That really deflated them."

Starter Brett Bordes, subbing on the hill for the injured Zechry Zinicola (groin), hadn't pitched since striking out 10 Arizona batters Feb. 24. He was relieved by Erik Averill (2-0) with one out in the fifth.

After Webb got the big out in the seventh, closer Pat Bresnehan, making his first appearance of the series, allowed one hit while striking out two over the final two innings.

"I thought we really continue to get better, especially for the guys who haven't pitched much," ASU coach Pat Murphy said.

Tulane played without coach Rick Jones, who was ejected after Bogusevic was called out on strikes with two on in the fifth.

"We knew going on the road it was going to be tough," said Jones, who argued with the umpires throughout the series. "That's just the way it is.

"We played one of the top five teams in the country. We're disappointed after we won the first game we didn't win the series. But they don't lose too many series. Not in this ballpark."

Pedroia had another big day for ASU at the plate and in the field. In the sixth, he backhanded a wicked short hop and threw out at first Tulane shortstop Tommy Manzella, who as he crossed first base turned back to look at Pedroia as if to wonder how he got to the ball.

"Pedro doesn't get enough credit," Murphy said. "The last two days he's been really on it. He's had nine straight good at-bats."

EXTRA BASE: ASU plays a two-game series with rebuilding Oklahoma State beginning Tuesday. The Pac-10 season commences this weekend against California.

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