Arizona State goes up -- way up

June, 18, 2009
OMAHA, Neb. -- The Kole Calhoun Show continues.

As an encore to his game-tying grand slam in the fifth inning, Calhoun ripped a two-run double to right center in the seventh to give Arizona State a 6-4 lead over North Carolina.

ASU opened the bottom half of the seventh with a Jason Kipnis single to right, followed by a Carlos Ramirez walk. That chased reliever Colin Bates and brought in Patrick Johnson. On Johnson's first pitch to Calhoun, the left fielder squared to bunt and then quickly took his bat back and drove the ball to the wall as Kipnis and Ramirez came around to score.

Only the Sun Devils weren't finished. Not by a long shot.

They loaded the bases with a pair of walks, and then a passed ball charged to catcher Mark Fleury allowed Calhoun to score from third to make it 7-4 ASU.

Another walk, this time to Jared McDonald, loaded the bases again, and then Zack MacPhee laced a single to left that scored Johnny Ruettiger and Riccio Torrez for a 9-4 Sun Devils lead.

A double steal moved McDonald to third and MacPhee to second, and then Drew Maggi singled to center to bloat the ASU lead to seven runs at 11-4.

Maggi stole second and then moved to third on a groundout by Kipnis. But a Ramirez single to left plated Maggi for a 12-4 margin.

Eight runs on five hits, if you're keeping score at home.

It certainly looks like the Tar Heels are finished, which would mean Carolina's season is down to six outs if it can't find any more offense. But stay tuned, because stranger things have happened in this ballpark on this stage.



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