ASU baseball loses to UNLV off error-filled fourth inning

The Sun Devils took a couple steps back after a solid weekend against Cal, falling to the Rebels 11-7.

After a strong weekend against then- No. 15 Cal, ASU baseball fell back into some old habits Tuesday night against UNLV and dropped the midweek matchup 11-7.

The Sun Devils started strong, though. They took the lead in the first after a triple from junior infielder David Greer brought sophomore second baseman Andrew Snow home. Then, a single from junior catcher Brian Serven put the Devils up 2-0.

The early momentum was carried through to the third after junior shortstop Colby Woodmansee doubled, putting him in scoring position for Serven, who tripled. ASU took a 3-0 lead.

UNLV, however found a way to come back and evened things up in the fourth, then came out in the sixth and scored six runs off two errors by ASU.

"When you play poor defense and you put that with a thin pitching staff that makes it really, really tough on you," head coach Tracy Smith said. "It's kind of been that way all year, and that's why we are where we are right now."

Smith went through six pitchers trying to steer things back in the right direction. Senior Jordan Aboites got the start and went five innings with five hits and three runs before Smith brought in Chris Isbell in the sixth. Isbell recorded the loss, going only 1/3 of an inning allowing four runs, none of which were earned, on two hits. 

Sophomore Grant Schneider took the mound after Isbell to finish out the sixth, but allowed two runs and was then replaced by freshman Garvin Alston Jr.

Alston Jr. pitched only one inning before freshman Fitz Stadler came in in the eighth and allowed two more runs, recording no outs. Freshman James Ryan finished things off in the eighth and ninth, but the damage had already been done.

"You don't have to have a 95 mile per hour fastball to get people out, you have to locate. You don't have to have an 82 mile per hour slider, you have to locate," Smith said. "We did not do a good job, to me, of locating tonight when we were ahead in the count."

At the plate in the eighth, it looked like the Sun Devils could stage a comeback with RBI doubles from Snow and junior Sebastian Zawada that cut the Rebels' lead to four. However, ASU couldn't make anything happen the rest of the night.

The Sun Devils will take on Stanford this weekend. Junior Seth Martinez will get the start Friday, but the rest of the weekend is still to be determined based on the way game one plays out, Smith said.

"You're going to have games like this where you do everything wrong, that's baseball," Smith said. "We're going to have to have a short memory on this because if you don't, you're facing one of the top pitching staffs in the conference ... we've got to strive to have more consistency."

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