KENT, Ohio (May 17) - The fifth-seeded Miami University RedHawks used four double
plays and solid pitching to defeat second-seeded the Central Michigan
University Chippewas 7-3 May 17 at Gene Michael Field in Kent, Ohio.
Junior righthander Nate Tekavac (9-5) earned the victory for Miami
(36-21), throwing a complete game while giving up three runs on eight
hits. He struck out two Chippewas and gave up two walks.
"You have to give credit to Nate," Central Michigan head coach Judd
Folske said. "From the fourth inning on, he held our guys in check."
The four double plays by Miami ties a MAC Tournament record set by
Central Michigan versus Kent State University in 1998.
"To win, things have to go your way," Miami head coach Tracy Smith
said. "Those things could have been the double play balls."
Miami scored a single run in the first inning when Bobby Barnes
singled, then advanced to third on a failed pick-off attempt by pitcher
Mike Steele. Barnes scored on a groundout by Jeremy Ison. Central
Michigan (40-16) answered with two runs in the bottom half of the
inning. A double by leftfielder Kevin Uzarski was followed by a single
by centerfielder Matt Crowley. Rightfielder Jake Sanborn grounded out
to third to drive in Uzarski. Designated hitter Mike Galloway then
singled to drive in Crowley.
In the second inning, Miami retook the lead on an RBI single by
designated hitter Tom Yost and a run-scoring double play by leftfielder
Uzarski hit his fifth home run of the season to right field in the
third that tied the game at three.
Miami broke the deadlock in the sixth inning after a double by
shortstop Jeremy Ison and a seeing-eye single by second baseman John
Lackaff, scoring Ison. That was Lackaff's 62nd run-batted-in of the
season, tying the Miami single-season record. A bases-loaded walk to
Nori scored Lackaff to make the score 5-3. A passed ball by Central
Michigan catcher Shaun Gragg allowed first baseman Joe Spain to score,
giving Miami the 6-3 lead. Miami added a run in the seventh as Spain
doubled to left, scoring Lackaff.
Steele (8-1) picked up the loss for Central Michigan, going 5 1/3
innings and giving up four earned runs on eight hits.
"Steele lost his spots," Folske said. "His pitching repetoire is
ball movement. Today, his ball was straighter."
Miami will play Thursday against Ohio at 4 p.m. Central Michigan
will play the loser of the Kent-Northern Illinois University game in an
elimination game Thursday at 10 a.m.