TUCSON, Ariz.- Arizona junior Jordan Brown hit a two-out, two-run home run in the bottom of the 14th inning to lift the No. 10-ranked Arizona baseball team to 7-6 victory over No. 11-ranked rival Arizona State in non-conference action at Kindall Field in Tucson on Tuesday.
The blast was Brown’s third of the season and kept the Wildcats unbeaten at 7-0 for the year. Arizona State dropped to 6-5 with the loss.
The home run capped off a dramatic inning that saw junior Trevor Crowe get caught stealing for the first time in his last 31 attempts on a close play at second for the second out in the frame.
Tied 5-5 after 13 full innings, ASU took a one-run lead in the top of the 14th on a bases loaded, four-pitch walk by Arizona reliever Mike Koons to Sun Devil second baseman Joe Persichina.
Crowe led off the bottom of the frame with a single through the right side, his third hit of the night. Classmate Brad Boyer failed to advance Crowe on two sacrifice bunt attempts and eventually went down on strikes for the first out in the inning.
Crowe, who went 26 for 26 in stolen bases to end the 2004 season and was 4 for 4 this year, took off for second on the first pitch to senior Jeff Van Houten and was called out as he slid into second to end his streak at 30-straight.
Van Houten, who finished the game 3 for 7 with a home run, two RBI and two runs scored, followed the bang-bang play on Crowe with a base hit up the middle to put the game in Brown’s hands.
Arizona’s home run leader in 2004 left little doubt as he drilled reliever Ty Marotz’s 2-1 offering off the scoreboard in right center field for his 19th career homer and the first walk-off blast for Arizona in over year.
Trailing 5-2 after six innings, Van Houten’s first homer of the year, a two-run shot off the batter’s eye in center field, capped off a three-run seventh inning that tied the game at 5-5.
Reliever’s Pat Bresnehan for ASU and Mark Melancon and Koons for UA battled over the next six innings to keep the game knotted until the dramatic 14th.
Brown’s blast rewarded Koons (1-0) with his first career victory, while ASU’s Martoz (0-1) was charged with the loss.
Individual standouts from the five hour game included ASU’s Colin Curtis (4 for 6, RBI, run) and Bresnehan (5 1/3 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 7 K) and UA’s Crowe (3 for 5, 3B, 2 R, SB), Brown (2 for 7, 2 RBI, 2 R, HR), Van Houten and Melancon (4 1/3 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 4 K)
Arizona will head out on the road for the first time in 2005 with a trip to Edinburg, Texas, for a three-game series against UT Pan Am this Friday-Sunday.