PHOENIX—For the second consecutive night, Arizona State used a two-out rally to overcome an early CSU Bakersfield lead as the Sun Devils defeated the Roadrunners 4-2 Saturday night.
CSUB took the lead first when Andrew Penner’s RBI ground out in the top of the third put CSUB on top. The Roadrunners took advantage of a Sun Devil’s error in the fourth as Mahlik Jones drove in Ryan Grotjohn with a single.
Arizona State got on the board in the fifth when Tyler Williams singled in Zach Cerbo who had doubled with one out. Williams tied the game with two outs when he scored on a Jeremy McCuin single. Gage Canning came up next and hit a two-run home run that would put Arizona State ahead for good.
The Roadrunners threatened in the eighth. Mark Pena walked to bring up Penner, but Eli Lingos struck out the CSUB No. 2 batter before the second time in the game. David Metzgar singled through the left side to bring the go-ahead run up in Max Carter. Connor Higgins relieved Lingos. Carter popped up Higgins’ first pitch to wrap up the frame.
Ryan Grotjohn led off the ninth with an infield single. He advanced to second when Carter ALdrete committed a throwing error at short. Grotjohn was thrown out at third attempting to move up 90 feet on a Jones ground ball. Jake Ortega lined out. Higgins struck out Sergio Robles to end the game.
“We took a tough loss tonight,” said CSUB interim head coach Jeremy Beard. “In close games like this, mistakes are magnified. We made a few and it cost us momentum at key times. We need to learn from this and keep getting better.”
The ASU defense kept CSUB at bay for most of the game. The Sun Devils turned four double plays and threw out two CSUB baserunners attempting to steal. Lingos tossed 7.2 innings, scattering eight hits. He struck out six. Higgins went the final 1.1 earned the save.
Metzgar’s two-out double in the first extended consecutive on-base streak to 31. He has a 17-game hitting streak, tying him with Jason Kudlock (2010) for the fourth longest in school history. The senior second baseman was 3-of-4 at the plate. Mahlik Jones also recorded two hits for the ‘Runners. Canning was 3-for-4 to pace the Sun Devils. Aldrete tallied two hits for the Sun Devils.
CSUB (19-15) and ASU (18-19) conclude the series Sunday. Coverage on Twitter.com via Pac-12 Plus gets underway at 12:30 p.m.