ASU Baseball: Sun Devils sweep Xavier, improve to 15-0

OMAHA, NE - JUNE 23: Travis Buck
OMAHA, NE - JUNE 23: Travis Buck /

No. 23 ASU baseball defeated Xavier 11-6 on Sunday, sweeping the Musketeers and improving to 15-0 on the season. The Sun Devils scored over 10 runs for the ninth time.

Arizona State’s Hunter Bishop recorded three hits with five RBIs, including a hit in the eighth to extend the lead to 9-3. DH Erik Tolman recorded three hits in three at-bats, his first three hits of the season.

Tolman has had just five at-bats on the year. He also recorded three perfect innings against Xavier on Saturday night.

“I think he’s earned it,” said ASU head coach Tracy Smith. “He’s a guy, in our Fall stuff, who hit really well. We expected him to do something today because he’s a really really competitive kid.”

Tolman went in-depth about being split between pitching and catching, acknowledging former ASU two-way player Mike Leake in the process.

“Compared to all the other position players, I probably take half of the swings for game days,” Tolman said. “For practices, I do just as many, after practice I’m here hitting, occasionally. They’re definitely hitting a lot more than me, but I do want to change that on game days.”

Starting pitcher RJ Dabovich got the win for ASU, facing 28 batters, striking out six and walking only three. His aggressive pitching style continued into today, throwing 57 strikes on 90 total pitches.

His ability to attack the strike zone has led him to 18 strikeouts on the season.

Chaz Montoya, Brady Corrigan and Blake Burzell were the relief pitchers for ASU. Burzell closed, but surrendered three earned runs in the process.

“We got some things we need to work on with (Burzell),” Smith said. “There’s a tendency, particularly with young guys, when the score is a little bit wider, guys get a little mentally lazy. They don’t treat it like a tight ballgame.”

Smith said he’s not losing confidence in Burzell, and that he’s one of the players they want to continue trusting on the mound as they head into conference play.

Xavier left fielder Allbry Major had a productive day on both sides of the ball, robbing a home run from Alika Williams on defense and driving in three runs on a late-game double and a home run in the top of the second.

Though an early home run can be detrimental to a pitcher’s confidence, Dabovich’s approach was to let it roll off of his shoulders and focus on the next batter.

“I feel like most scouting reports on me are ‘heavy fastball,'” he said. “I felt like in the first couple innings they were ambushing swings. We recognized that and went to the breaking ball more for the first pitch and stayed on top of them.”

More. ASU Baseball: Big 5th inning the difference in 8-3 win over Xavier. light

ASU stays at Phoenix Municipal for their mid-week opponent New Mexico State, their fifteenth home game of the year. Their record stands at 14-3, and they previously recorded 38 runs in a single game against Texas Southern.

All quotes in this article were obtained firsthand by Devils in Detail unless otherwise noted.