Archive for: May 2014

Inaugural Sour Fest this weekend at Tap & Bottle in Tucson

2014-05-24 10.23.18-1

TUCSON, Ariz. — The latest rage in the craft brew industry is the onset of sour beers. These beers are exactly what they sound like, ales brewed and fermented to give a notable sour taste and aroma. The highly acidic beers can range in color from golden to brown with a low to medium hop bite. Unlike traditional brewing, sour beers are made by allowing wild yeast strains into the brew.

The most common strains are Lactobacillus, Bretannomyces and Pediococcus while tart fruits like cherries and raspberries are sometimes added during the aging process to activate a secondary fermentation.

Tucson’s very own Tap and Bottle at 403 North 6th Ave. is celebrating the sour beer this weekend with the inaugural sour fest.  Co-owners Scott and Rebecca Safford, who opened up the craft and beer tasting room last June with the hopes of creating a community where one could sample local, regional and national craft beer and wine in a relaxing and creative atmosphere.

The Sour Fest begins with a class entitled Sour 101 at 11 a.m. and continues with a tasting of bottle tasting at 1:30 p.m. Later in the afternoon, the Destihl Brewery will take over with eight separate beers on tap.

Sunday will offer a brewers panel at noon with local brewers explaining how to brew sours at noon. Another sour bottle tasting will be at 3 p.m. as well as a sour tap takeover at 5 pm.

The following is a list of beers that will be available so make your way to Tap & Bottle this weekend to expand your flavor palette and immerse yourself in sour beers—Pucker Up!

(Bold denotes local Tucson beer)

Saturday

  • New Belgium La Folie

    New Belgium La Folie

    Destihl Counter Clockweisse – Easy drinking, hints of lemon and pleasantly tart

  • Destihl Gose – Bright, citrus, salty, refreshingly sour.
  • Destihl Flemish Amber – Rich, malty, hints of oak, and wild lactic sourness. 
  • Destihl Flanders Red  – Sweet-sour, complex, lots of dark fruits, slight caramel.
  • Destihl Adam Bier  – Exotic malt profile, figs, and hints of citric acid. 
  • Destihl Black Berliner Weisse – Slight roast, nicely attenuated, and all the more sour. 
  • Destihl Sour Apple – Tart apple skin, boatloads of funk, slightly sweet.
  • Destihl Sour Strawberry – Tart strawberry and lemon, crisp, with a funky finish.
  • Petrus Aged Pale – Bright, apple skins, hints of wood, crip finish, mild sourness. 
  • Monks Cafe Flemish Red – Slightly sweet, mild complexity, lactic body, tart finish. 
  • Rodenbach Grand Cru – Delicate, semi-sweet, dark fruits, acetic finish. 
  • New Belgium La Folie – Malty, sharp lactic sourness, funk on the nose. 
  • Jolly Pumpkin Madrugada Obscura  – Bright, citrus, salty, refreshingly sour.
  • Professor Fritz Briem Berliner Weisse – Crisp, refreshing, mild funk, easy sour finish. 
  • Unity Vibration KPA – Funkmaster, vinegar, hoppy bouquet, complex finish.  
  • Dragoon Daisy – Funky citrus nose, wild, crisp, tart finish. 
  • Duchesse De Bourgogne – Lots of balsamic vinegar, oak, dates, mild lactic sour finish. 
  • Upslope/Crooked Stave Ferus Fluxxus – Amazing

Sunday

  • Monk's Cafe Flemish Red

    Monk’s Cafe Flemish Red

    New Belgium Love  – Sour and juicy, berries, oak, and hints of balsalmic vinegar. 

  • Monks Cafe Flemish Red – Slightly sweet, mild complexity, lactic body, tart finish.
  • Borderlands Citrana  – Loads of citrus, wild nose, devastatingly refreshing. 
  • Uinta Birthday Suit – Barnyard nose, nice tart body, complex finish.
  • Strubbe’s Grand Cru – Semi-dry, leather, caramel, mild lactic finish. 
  • Dragoon Daisy – Funky citrus nose, wild, crisp, tart finish
  • Iron Johns Sour Xmas
  • Iron Johns Collins Folly
  • Iron Johns Beared Mary 
  • Duchesse De Bourgogne – Lots of balsamic vinegar, oak, dates, mild lactic sour finish.
  • Sentinel Peak Berlinner Weisse
  • Struise Welzmertz Blond Stout 

Arizona softball drops super regionals opener to Louisiana-Lafayette

Wilson ArizonaLAFAYETTE, La. — Arizona began the game with a leadoff home run from All-Conference first team selection Hallie Wilson, but would get little offense until the final frame of a 5-3 loss to Louisiana-Lafayette Friday night in Lafayette, La. The final Wildcat runs came when shortstop Kellie Fox launched a 2-run homer over the center field wall scoring Kelsey Rodriguez who reached on an error in the prior at-bat.

Cajuns’ junior Christina Hamilton pitched a complete game, scattering seven hits while only giving up two earned runs with four strikeouts and four walks.

For Arizona, seniors Estela Pinon and Shelby Babcock each pitched three innings. Pinon took the loss after giving up five hits and five earned runs, while striking out one and walking four. Babcock shut down the Cajuns’ bats, only surrendering one hit and no runs in the final three frames.

Aside from Wilson’s homer in the first and Fox’s two-run shot in the seventh, the Wildcats couldn’t find a groove. Power hitters Chelsea Goodacre, Katiyana Mauga and Mo Mercado managed a meager 1-for-11 with three strikeouts.

Arizona (44-15) and Louisiana-Lafayette (48-8-1) will meet tomorrow at noon PT with the Wildcats needing a victory to force a decisive third game at 3 p.m. for the right to go to Oklahoma City for the Women’s College World Series.

Oregon leads men’s golf championships after soggy, rain-shortened first day

Foushee Oregon

HUTCHINSON, Kan. — The No. 40 University of Oregon men’s golf team holds the lead at the 2014 NCAA men’s golf championship in a rain-shortened opening round Friday at Prairie Dunes Country Club in Hutchinson, Kansas.

The rain delayed the first drives for 40 minutes and allowed a couple teams to get started before play was halted for another five hours.

Shortly after noon PT, play resumed with 15 of the 30 teams in the field able to get in some holes. The Ducks are currently leading the field at 3-under with holes five through seven completed. 18th-ranked UCLA sits in a tie for 11th place at 3-over after completing holes six through nine, while USC is 11-over par through the same three holes.

Oregon’s Zach Foushee sits all alone atop the individual leaderboard at three strokes under par through six holes played. UCLA’s Anton Arboleda, USC’s Rico Hoey and Oregon’s Brandon McIver are all tied for second at 2-under. Arboleda has played eight holes while Hoey has finished six and McIver has completed five.

Play is scheduled to begin at 5 a.m. PT on Saturday. Teams that have yet to tee off are No. 3 Stanford, No. 4 California and No. 8 Washington.

Arizona State Baseball Closes Packard Stadium With Class

 

Corey Hahn2TEMPE, Ariz. —  Arizona State ended its 40-year stretch at Packard Stadium with a first-pitch strike from recent graduate and former Sun Devil Baseball student-athlete Cory Hahn. The Sun Devils then took a 4-2 victory over Abilene Christian in front of 3,466 fans on Tuesday night.

Hahn decided on Arizona State in 2010 after being heavily recruited by other colleges. He was paralyzed from the chest down sliding into second base against New Mexico in first weekend series at Arizona State in 2011. Hahn continued to be omnipresent at many games and events as a student coach as well as the inspirational leader. He had his lifetime dream realized when he was drafted by the hometown Arizona Diamondbacks in the 34th round of the 2013 Major League Draft.

Hahn graduated from the W.P. Carey School of Business with a Bachelor of Arts in business with a communications concentration. The W.P. Carey School is one of the most widely-respected business schools in the nation and is ranked in the top 30 programs by U.S. News & World Report.

Hahn's #34 worn by all players

Hahn’s #34 worn by all players

The Sun Devils baseball program closed Packard with a .785 winning percentage over 1,430 total games. The legendary stadium was home to 80 NCAA postseason games; 20 regional series and four super regional series. The Sun Devils have won 16 conference titles and two National Championships and have produced 19 ASU Hall of Fame players during the Packard era.

80 Major League Baseball players have called Packard home during their college years including two Most Valuable Players, four Rookies of the Year, an ALCS and NLCS MVP and four World Series champions.

Freshman right-handed pitcher Seth Martinez took the mound for his seventh start and lasted 5.2 innings giving up a run in the third and the Wildcats’ go-ahead run in the sixth before being relived by fellow freshmen Hever Bueno and Eder Erives. Sophomore Jordan Aboites took the mound in the 8th inning and took the win to raise his record to 4-2 and fellow sophomore Ryan Burr fanned the side in the ninth inning to record his 11th save of the year.

Center fielder Johnny Sewald began the game with a leadoff walk and advanced to third on a sacrifice bunt by shortstop Drew Stankiewicz and a wild pitch before he crossed home on first baseman Nate Causey’s RBI double to right-center field in the bottom of the first inning.

The Devils’ bats went silent until junior right fielder Trever Allen led off the bottom of the seventh with a triple to center field and scored the game-tying run in the next at-bat on a RBI single from third baseman Dalton DiNatale. Stankiewicz and left fielder Jake Peevyhouse opened the eighth with a single and a double, respectively, and Causey was intentionally walked two batters later to load the bases for Allen, who drove in the winning runs.

Pac-12 Player of the Week Stankiewicz

Pac-12 Player of the Week Stankiewicz

The Sun Devils have now won a season-high seven straight games and have yet to lose while wearing their throwback “Tequila Sunrise” uniforms. Arizona State moved to 31-21 overall this season extending the nation’s longest 30-win season streak to 52. They are also 17-10 in the Pac-12 Conference, tied for third place with the Oregon Ducks.

The Sun Devils hit the road for the final regular season series against Washington State with Pac-12 Player of the Week Stankiewicz looking to earn back-to-back honors. Also looking to extend streaks are Trever Allen, who has hit safely in 10 straight games and Jake Peevyhouse who has safely reached base in 18 games, the longest of any player this season.

Ameri-CAN Canned Craft Beer Festival This Saturday in Scottsdale

AmeriCAN1SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. — Crack open a frosty beer and celebrate with a thousand of your closest friends at the Scottsdale Civic Center on Saturday.

Professionally produced by HDE Agency in partnership with SanTan Brewing Company, the Fourth Annual Ameri-CAN Canned Craft Beer Festival returns to Scottsdale and is stronger than ever.

General admission tickets are $35 each and include admission, a souvenir can and 20 four-ounce pours. VIP tickets are available through presale purchase only for $100. VIP tickets include admission one hour early, a souvenir can, 20 four-ounce pours, catered food, a private VIP zone with private restrooms and exclusive specialty beer sampling.

Gates open at noon for VIP ticket holders and 1 p.m. for general admission. There will be live music from Sugar Thieves, Dry River Yacht Club and Take Cover with DJ Slippe spinning tracks in between sets. There will also be food trucks on site including Mustache Pretzels and The Grilled Cheese Truck. The festival goes until 6 p.m. with last pour usually around 5:30 to 5:45 p.m.

americancan

You can enjoy these beers on Saturday

There will also be a beer science garden as well as a Beer Olympics featuring fun and games including beer pong and bean-bag toss or “cornhole.”

The 2014 festival will feature more than 80 national breweries will offer over 250 beers in their humblest form—the can. The festival is the brain child of SanTan Brewing Co. owner and brewmaster, Anthony Canecchia.

SanTan Brewing began canning their beer in 2009 and by 2010, with very few brewers caning their beers, Canecchia thought it would be a great idea to showcase the can.

“Four years ago, cans were still looked down upon,” said Canecchia. “The stigma came from the idea that cans give beer a metallic taste, but that’s not true. The FDA requires a water-based polymer coating that prevents any liquid from coming in contact with metal and giving it an acrid taste.”

If you have ever heard the adage, “the darker the bottle, the higher quality the beer,” you can take that to the next level with cans. No light whatsoever, gets through an aluminum can, thus preserving the beer quality and providing a longer shelf life than the traditional bottle.

Seven local Arizona breweries will be in attendance with national representation from Alaskan Brewing Co. in Juneau, Alaska to Woodchuck Hard Cider in Middlebury, Vt., with many stops in between including Tallgrass Brewing from Manhattan, Kan., Nola Brewing from New Orleans, La., and Founders Brewing from Grand Rapids, Mich.

can-wall

CAN you drink them all?

Arizona suds seekers will be treated to some rare beers that are hardly, if ever, found in Arizona. Australian Brewery from Sydney will also offer up their take on canned craft beer while early trendsetters in the microbrew movement, Samuel Adams and Sierra Nevada will have their beers available in cans.

The festival coincides with the national American Craft Beer Week which is celebrated May 12-18. According to the Brewers Association, there are currently more than 2,800 small and independent craft breweries and hundreds more popping up across the country every year.

“American Craft Beer Week allows everyone to honor and toast the hard work and success of the craft beer community,” said Julia Herz, publisher of CraftBeer.com and craft beer program director at the Brewers Association. “Against many odds, craft brewers have used grassroots efforts to grow the industry one glass, one bottle, one can, one keg, one growler and one customer at a time.”

The festival will not only offer a respite from a hot day, it will also support the community. HDE Agency’s Jen Pruett says “a portion of event proceeds will benefit the Scottsdale Cultural Council and the American Foundation for Cardiomyopathy.”

Great beer doing good, that’s a cause that we can all get behind.

Details: 1 p.m.-6 p.m. Saturday May 17. Scottsdale Civic Center, 3939 N. Drinkwater Blvd. $35-$100. cannedcraftbeerfest.com.

5 Pac-12 Teams Finish Regular Season in Top 10

 

ASU_UCLAThe Arizona State Sun Devils dropped the weekend series to UCLA, yet only fell one spot with Arizona doing the same, dropping its series to Washington. Here’s how the Pac-12 fared in the latest release of the USA Today/NFCA Division I softball poll:

No. 1 Oregon (49-7-1, 20-3-1 Pac-12)

Oregon traveled to Tucson to take on the No. 9 Wildcats and managed two wins in a stadium where no visiting team had won this season. Sophomore ace Cheridan Hawkins went the distance on Thursday and worked a run-rule victory on Saturday. Hawkins picked up her 29th and 30th wins while striking out 17 batters while only walking three. Oregon finished the regular season as the top-ranked team for the sixth consecutive week and was named the overall No. 1 seed for the NCAA softball championships.

Catcher Janelle Lindvall paced the Ducks’ offense with 5-of-9 hitting with six RBI, including a home run on Thursday and a double in the finale. Center fielder Koral Costa also knocked a two-run HR in Saturday’s 14-3 slufgest. Oregon hosts Albany, Utah Valley and Wisconsin in the regional round this weekend.

No. 2 UCLA (48-6, 19-5 Pac-12)

Ally Carda

Ally Carda

No. 2 UCLA also completed the regular season in Arizona, with the Bruins visiting Tempe and Arizona State. After suffering a 2-0 shutout Thursday night, junior pitcher Ally Carda revived UCLA with wins on Friday and Saturday. Carda, Thursday night’s starter, won both games in relief, taking over for Paige McDuffee and Jessica Hall. Carda fanned 21 Sun Devils in 17.2 innings pitched.

The National Player of the Year candidate also knocked a two-run HR in Friday night’s extra-inning matchup, finishing 2-of-4 with three RBI and four runs scored. The monster effort from Carda earned her the Pac-12 Pitcher of the Week nod, her third of the season.

The Bruins are the NCAA championship’s No. 3 national seed and host Long Beach State, Notre Dame and Southern Utah in the regional round.

No. 4 Arizona State (44-10-1, 15-7-1 Pac-12)

 

The Sun Devils have faced the top two teams in the country the past two weeks, finishing with an admirable 2-3-1 record against the cream of the nation’s crop. Senior pitcher Dallas Escobedo pitched a two-hit masterpiece Thursday night, shutting out the Bruins for the first time, 2-0. The first-inning home run by catcher Amber Freeman, a team-tying 11th on the season, brought the only scoring in the pitchers’ duel.

Friday night’s game also went down to the wire with the Sun Devils taking a 5-4 lead in the fourth inning, only to allow the Bruins back into the game in the seventh inning and ultimately lose in the ninth. Senior shortstop Cheyenne Coyle finished the weekend with 3-of-7 hitting with three RBI including a two-run HR on Saturday. Arizona State was named the No. 9 national seed and hosts No. 13 Michigan along with San Diego State and Dartmouth in the NCAA regionals this weekend.

 

No. 8 Washington (33-13, 13-9 Pac-12)

Bryana Walker

Bryana Walker

Washington stayed put at the No. 8 spot despite making quick work of the California Golden Bears over the weekend. Senior pitcher Kaitlin Inglesby picked up her 12th win on Thursday and pitched a masterful performance on Saturday, giving up only one hit in a 14-0 run-rule victory. Fellow senior Bryana Walker picked up the save on Thursday night and her 18th win on Friday.

The Huskies’ bats were electric in Berkeley, outscoring the Bears 27-4. Kylee Lahners paced UW with five RBI, including a double on Saturday and two home runs. Not to be outdone, senior first baseman Hooch Fagaly also knocked homers on Friday and Saturday and finished the weekend 4-of-9 with four RBI and three runs scored. The 12-seeded Huskies host BYU, Iona and Northwestern in the regional round.

No. 10 Arizona (40-11, 13-8 Pac-12)

Arizona dropped back-to-back series for the first time this season after losing two of three to the No. 1 Ducks last weekend. The Wildcats suffered their first loss at home on Thursday night and their second mercy-rule loss of the season on Saturday – all in the final week of the season. Under the bright Friday night lights and in front of 2,566 fans, Arizona erupted for 11 runs, including a six-run first inning over Oregon’s Karissa Hovinga, who suffered only her second loss of the season.

Chelsea Goodacre, Katiyana Mauga and Kelsey Rodriguez all connected with long balls on Friday, while Estela Pinon earned her 17th win on the year and Shelby Babcock collected her second save. Rodriguez finished the weekend with a double, two homers and three RBI while Goodacre hit 5-of-8, including two doubles and a home run. Arizona received the No. 11 national seed and hosts No. 23 LSU along with Louisville and Boston University this weekend in the regionals.

Arizona State Baseball: Sun Devils Secure Series Win Over Oregon

Drew Stankiewicz-ASU Athletics

TEMPE, Ariz.—  The Arizona State baseball team has 12 wins over nationally ranked teams this year and has walked away with series wins over three in the top 15—including two on the road. The Sun Devils (26-21, 14-10 Pac-12) took two from No. 9 Oregon (36-16, 14-10 Pac-12) this weekend and moved into a third place tie with the Ducks in the Pac-12 Conference.

Coach Tim Esmay’s squad has won eight of its past 12 games at home and have only four games remaining in the forty-year old Packard Stadium before moving to nearby Phoenix Municipal Stadium beginning in 2015.>>>Read more on College Baseball Central

 

Pac-12 softball on TV viewer guide: May 8-10

UCLA

It’s the final weekend of the regular season for Pac-12 softball and the schedule is packed with some intriguing matchups. There’s a top-three matchup in Tempe between UCLA and Arizona State along with a top-10 matchup between Oregon and Arizona in Tucson where the Wildcats have been perfect all season with 18 run-rule victories.

No. 1 Oregon at No. 9 Arizona 

  • Kailee CuicoThursday: 5 p.m. PT, Pac-12 Networks
  • Friday: 7:30 p.m. PT, Pac-12 Arizona/Washington
  • Saturday: 11:30 a.m. PT, Pac-12 Network/Arizona/Mountain/Oregon

The top-ranked Ducks travel to Tucson and hope for a better weekend than they had last weekend hosting Arizona State. It is highly doubtful that there will be any rain delays in Tucson so look to all three games being played as scheduled.

The teams face off on Thursday at 5 p.m. PT, 7:30 p.m. on Friday night and bright and early at 11:30 a.m. on Saturday. Oregon has won 13 of its past 15 games and have only lost two conference games all season. Arizona will be a difficult opponent as it is undefeated (27-0) at home this season and leads the nation in home runs (95) and scoring (7.78 runs per game), while ranking second in the country in batting average (.357) and on-base percentage (.445)

No. 2 UCLA at No. 3 Arizona State

  • ASU SoftballThursday: 7 p.m. PT, Pac-12 Network/Arizona/Los Angeles/Mountain
  • Friday: 5:30 p.m. PT, Pac-12 Network/Arizona/Los Angeles/Mountain
  • Saturday: 3:30 p.m. PT, Pac-12 Network/Arizona/Los Angeles/Mountain

The Bruins are hoping for a big weekend in the desert. With hopes still alive to clinch the Pac-12 regular season title, UCLA needs to bring its best for all three games. Three of UCLA’s five losses this season have come on the road and Arizona State has only lost one conference game at home, to rival Arizona—in 10 innings.

The Sun Devils are out of the Pac-12 Conference race, but could move up a spot with a series win or sweep over the Bruins. The teams meet Thursday night at 7 p.m. PT, 5:30 p.m. on Friday and 3:30 p.m. on Saturday.

 

No. 8 Washington at California

  • Husky SoftballThursday: 3 p.m. PT, Pac-12 Networks
  • Friday: 3:30 p.m. PT, Pac-12 Networks
  • Saturday: 11:30 a.m. PT, Pac-12 Bay Area/Los Angeles/Washington

The Huskies finish off the regular season on the road in Berkeley against struggling California. The Bears have lost six straight and nine of their last 10, with their last conference victory coming nearly a month ago.

Conversely, the Huskies have been on fire lately, winning nine of their last 12 games since being swept in Eugene in late March. The Huskies and Bears will get their days started with early games at 3:00 p.m. PT on Thursday, 3:30 p.m. on Friday and 11:30 a.m. on Saturday. The Bears lead the series 41-35 with Washington winning two of three last year in Seattle.

NFL Draft Holds Promise or Heartbreak for Former Sun Devils

sutton_vazThe NFL Draft is finally here and the first round is set to take place Thursday night at 5 p.m. PT from New York City’s famed Radio City Music Hall. The three-day, seven-round bonanza is the culmination of a player’s lifetime of hard work and dedication, but as was shown after the 2013 Draft, nothing is guaranteed.

Arizona State had five players that had hopes on being drafted last season and a grand total of zero received the call, that’s right a big, fat goose egg. Team captains, linebacker Brandon Magee and safety Keelan Johnson were signed on as free agents after the draft was completed. Both are currently listed on team rosters, Magee with Cleveland and Johnson with Philadelphia, but nobody knows what effect this weekend’s draft will have on their roster spots.

Running back Cameron Marshall and wide receiver Jamal Miles were invited to training camps yet both were waived in pre-season by the Miami Dolphins and Jacksonville Jaguars respectively. Miles signed with the Edmonton Eskimos of the Canadian Football League but no word on Marshall’s status. Lindy’s and Sports Illustrated All-America punter Josh Hubner received nary an invite but is reportedly working and training in hopes for an invitation this year.

The Sun Devils’ outgoing senior class this year is hoping for a less tumultuous journey to fulfilling their dreams—let’s take a closer look at the players and if this weekend will bring promise or heartbreak.

Will Sutton

  • Will SuttonPosition: Defensive Tackle
  • Height: 6′ 1″
  • Weight: 300 lbs.

The two-time defending Pat Tillman Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Year saw a dropoff in production in his redshirt senior season and was battling reports of being sluggish and putting on “bad weight.” The consensus All-American and Morris Trophy winner in 2012 dominated the trenches and anchored the top-ranked Sun Devil defense.

It’s no question that Sutton will be drafted, the question is will he make an impact?

If he were to drop five to 10 pounds, I believe that Sutton could return to the form that he showed in 2012 when he could blow past offensive lineman without a second thought. Sutton set career highs that year with 13 sacks, 23.5 tackles for loss and 63 total tackles—he weighed 270-275 at the time.

Prediction: Late third round or early fourth round

Carl Bradford

  • BradfordPosition: Linebacker
  • Height: 6′ 1″
  • Weight: 250 lbs.

Sutton’s partner in crime, brother in destruction and close friend will be battling for the honor of first Sun Devil drafted this weekend. The duo’s 44 tackles for loss in 2012 were the most in school history and they were also the first pair to post double-digit sacks in the same season since 1994.

In  his senior season, Bradford was named first team All-Pac-12, following an honorable mention nod the year before. Bradford led the team with 8.5 sacks and managed 61 tackles, 19 for a loss—another team best.

Bradford started every game of his final two seasons and made an immediate impact at the Devilbacker position anchoring the linebackers. His reckless abandon and aggressive play make him desirable but his hybrid play in college may have NFL scouts wondering how that will translate to play at the next level.

Prediction: Late third round or early fourth round

Marion Grice

  • gricePosition: Running Back
  • Height: 6′ 0″
  • Weight: 207 lbs.

The two-year running back from Houston, Texas dominated out of the Arizona State backfield and his name litters the school’s record books. The two-time All-Pac-12 back is fifth all-time with 39 career touchdowns, although he only played in 24 games. His 234 points scored is the most in school history over a two-year span with his 2013 total of 120 points tied with Terry Battle for second place in school history. Grice’s 20 touchdowns in 2013 is only the third time in school history the plateau has been reached and the 15th time in conference history.

Grice was sidelined in the Nov. 23 victory over UCLA with a broken fibula and thus missed the NFL Scouting Combine and ASU’s Pro Day. Grice held a personal Pro Day last month with scouts from 10 NFL teams in attendance. The threat that makes Grice most desirable is his duality as a running back as well as a receiver. Grice led all Division I running backs with 14 receiving touchdowns in his two years in Tempe.

Prediction: Late fourth round or early fifth round

Other possible draftees:

  • darbyAlden Darby – Safety
  • Chris Coyle – Tight End
  • Evan Finkenberg – Offensive Line

Free Agent Signees:

  • Osahon Irabor – Cornerback
  • Robert Nelson – Cornerback
  • Chris Young – Linebacker

 

 

 

5 of Nation’s Top 10 Teams From the Pac-12

ASU OregonThe Washington Huskies return to the top 10 and leapfrog the Arizona Wildcats while the top three teams in the nation represent the Pac-12 Conference. Here’s how the Pac-12 fared in the latest release of the USA Today/NFCA Division I softball poll:

No. 1 Oregon (47-6-1, 18-2-1 Pac-12)

Despite only winning once in their past three games, the Ducks managed to hold on to their first-place ranking for a fifth straight week. Oregon dropped the series opener to No. 3 Arizona State, 4-2 due to fielding errors in the sixth inning. Sophomore ace Cheridan Hawkins fanned 10 batters in 6.2 innings and was the hard-luck loser, dropping to 28-4 on the season. The Ducks roared back on Saturday and run-ruled the Sun Devils for the first time since 2010.

Catcher Janelle Lindvall powered a huge nine-run second inning with a 2-of-3 performance resulting in two RBI and two runs scored. Pinch hitter Stevie Joe Knapp threw the knock-out punch with her three-run homer in the sixth inning. Sunday’s game was declared a 2-2 tie in the sixth inning after rain delays of 34 and 36 minutes. Oregon ends the season on the road at Arizona on a Thursday to Saturday set.

No. 2 UCLA (46-5, 17-4 Pac-12)

Ally Carda

Ally Carda

Taking their cue from Oregon, the Bruins dropped their series opener to Stanford, 12-9. Trailing 12-4 entering the bottom of the seventh inning, UCLA rallied to score five runs, however that would not be enough to overcome the eight-run deficit.

Also following suit with Oregon, UCLA would run-rule its opponent on Saturday, 9-0 in five innings.

Junior Ally Carda continued her domination on both sides of the ball, knocking in a three-run homerun and pitching a three-hit shutout en route to her 26th win of the season. Carda roared back on Sunday, breaking a 2-2 tie in the sixth inning on a two-run homer and then improved to 27-4 after picking up the win in relief. UCLA sees its final opponent of the regular season in Tempe when it takes on Arizona State beginning Thursday night.

No. 3 Arizona State (42-7, 13-4 Pac-12)

The Sun Devils visited the top-ranked Oregon Ducks and only lost once, a remarkable feat in itself. In Friday’s matchup, shortstop Cheyenne Coyle shocked Oregon by knocking a solo homer off ace Cheridan Hawkins in the first inning. The Ducks would strike back, scoring two runs in the fourth inning before the Devils rallied for three runs in the sixth. Senior pitcher Dallas Escobedo proved once again that she is one of the best pitchers in the country, striking out eight Ducks batters and allowing only five hits.

Saturday’s game was an emotional letdown after topping the No. 1 team in the country and the Devils were shelled for nine runs in the second inning while only managing three hits in six innings. The rain-interrupted game on Sunday saw Escobedo return to the circle and second baseman Nikki Girard pace the offense. Girard hit 2-of-2 with two RBI and a run scored, and it was her two-run homer that put the Devils up 2-0 in the fifth inning. Arizona State hosts No. 2 UCLA this weekend to complete the 2014 regular season.

No. 8 Washington (30-13, 10-9 Pac-12)

Hooch Fagaly

Hooch Fagaly

The Huskies jumped three spots and returned to the top 10 after taking two of three from visiting Arizona.The Huskies battled on Friday as the teams were knotted at seven runs apiece heading into the bottom of the seventh inning. Senior first baseman Hooch Fagaly stepped up big, delivering a walk-off grand-slam home run. Fagaly hit 4-of-6 over the weekend with four RBI and five runs scored, and was namedPac-12 Player of the Week for her efforts.

Senior pitcher Bryana Walker picked up the win in relief of Kaitlin Inglesby. Saturday’s game was rained out, so Walker returned to the circle Sunday morning to shut out the Wildcats, surrendering only one hit in the mercy-rule five-inning game, 8-0.

Walker’s luck would run out in the second game of the doubleheader as she was a handed a 2-0 loss despite surrendering only four hits over three innings. Inglesby pitched the final four innings, but neither team would plate another run. The Huskies travel to Berkeley this weekend to finish their season against Cal.

No. 9 Arizona (40-11, 13-8 Pac-12)

The Wildcats dropped their third series of the year, losing two of three to Washington and remaining stagnant in the polls. On Friday, Arizona jumped out early on Washington starter Kaitlin Ingelesby with three runs in the first inning and three more in the fourth. First baseman Hallie Wilson fueled the Wildcat offense with 3-of-4 hitting and her 13th home run. Not to be outdone, catcher Chelsea Goodacre knocked a two-run shot, her 21st of the season to tie the NCAA lead with homers on the season.

After the first game of Sunday’s doubleheader, senior pitcher Estela Pinon took the circle for the second game and pitched a two-hit gem that moved her record to 15-5. Shortstop Kellie Fox hit 2-of-3, but it was Kelsey Rodriguez who was the hero with a two-run shot in the third inning. The ‘Cats host the top-ranked Oregon Ducks this weekend in Tucson.