Carlos Ramirez had three hits and drove in three to lead the Arizona State University baseball team to a 7-4 win over Clemson on Saturday in Game One of the Tempe Super Regional. An above-capacity crowd of 4,381 at Winkles Field-Packard Stadium at Brock Ballpark saw the Sun Devils take a 1-0 lead in the best-of-three series and improve to 48-12 overall with the victory.
Ramirez singled in each of his last three at-bats, driving in a tying run in the fifth and two insurance runs in the eighth, to lead the Sun Devil offense. Matt Newman had two hits, including a go-ahead double in the seventh, while Drew Maggi added three hits and Jason Kipnis hit a solo home run.
Mike Leake went eight innings and allowed eight hits and four runs (three earned) with seven strikeouts to earn the win and move to 16-1 on the season. It was his 40th career win, tying him with College Baseball Hall of Famer Eddie Bane for third most in school history and the most by a Sun Devil pitcher in three seasons. Craig Swan and Kendall Carter are tied for the all-time lead with 47 wins, each over four seasons at ASU.
Mitchell Lambson pitched the ninth, striking out two, to earn his fifth save of the season.
The Sun Devils jumped ahead early, as Kipnis hit a solo home run to center in the first. Clemson fought back with a run in the third and then an unearned run in the fifth to take a 2-1 lead.
ASU responded in the bottom of the fifth with back-to-back two-out RBI singles by Ramirez and Calhoun to take the lead back, and Zack MacPhee then drove in a run with an infield single in the sixth.
The Tigers did not go away quietly, however, as designated hitter Chris Epps came through with a two-run single in the seventh to tie the game.
The Sun Devils took the lead back in the bottom of the seventh, as Newman came through with a two-out double off the wall in center to bring in Ramirez.
Another two-out rally in the eighth gave ASU some cushion. With a runner on first and two outs, Maggi singled and Kipnis walked before Ramirez drove in two with a single through the left side.
Lambson struck out the first two Clemson batters in the ninth, and then after third baseman Matt Sanders singled, he got Epps to pop out to short to end the game.
The Sun Devils and Tigers will play Game Two of the Tempe Super Regional on Sunday, with first pitch scheduled for 10 p.m. at Winkles Field-Packard Stadium at Brock Ballpark.
(Jack Leggett, Casey Harman, Chris Epps)
(Pat Murphy, Matt Newman, Mike Leake, Carlos Ramirez)