Sunday's MAC Baseball Results

Updated 5/9/2011

Sunday's MAC Baseball Results
Northern Illinois 2, Eastern Michigan 1
Ohio 6, Buffalo 4
Miami 3, Kent State 2
Bowling Green 5, Akron 1
Central Michigan 7, Toledo 6
Western Michigan 5, Ball State 4

Stories courtesy of MAC Sports Information Departments

Northern Illinois 2, Eastern Michigan 1
YPSILANTI, Mich. - Northern Illinois starter Tom Barry posted eight scoreless frames against Eastern Michigan, but his opposition Joe Battistelli did him one better, as he twirled a complete-game shutout in a 1-0 victory over the Huskies in Game Two of a three-game Mid-American Conference West Division series on Saturday afternoon at Oestrike Stadium. The series is now tied, 1-1.

Unfortunately for NIU (23-22, 11-9 MAC), the game-winning run came with help from a miscue at second base. Leading off the inning, Brent Ohrman hit a grounder that Alex Beckmann could not handle cleanly, and after a sacrifice bunt, the Huskies were faced with a tough situation as the winning run stood on second base with one out.

"A little bobble by Alex helped their guy beat it out," said NIU head coach Ed Mathey. "Then a slow roller through the right side did it for them.

"Tom threw the ball very well and deserved a better fate. That's baseball. You can't win any games unless you score some runs."

Following an intentional walk to set up a possible double play, Tucker Rubino drove a 3-2 offering through the right side to bring home the winning run, ending NIU's three-game winning streak.

Despite out-hitting the Eagles (31-16, 13-7 MAC) six to four, NIU was unable to take advantage of their scoring opportunities. In each of the third, fourth and sixth innings, NIU had a runner on second and one out but nothing came of it.

NIU's best chance came in the eighth, after Jeff Zimmerman led off with a double. One out later, Brian Riegler singled to center but Zimmerman was not fast enough to score from second on the play. Beckmann followed with a swinging strikeout and Jamison Wells hit into a fielder's choice force out to end the threat.

"We had some opportunities along the way; we just needed the hit to pick us up," said Mathey. "Riegler's ball just wasn't hit far enough into the outfield to send Zimmerman from second."

With a two-out Joe Etcheverry single and Troy White hit-by-pitch, the Huskies rallied in the ninth, too. But once again NIU was bitten by the strikeout as Zimmerman fanned swinging.

Posting just the third shutout of the year against the Huskies, Battistelli surrendered the six hits and allowed no walks as he struck out seven to improve to 6-1 on the season.

Taking the loss in his best career start and second career complete game effort, Barry (3-5) gave up the unearned run on four hits and two walks with four strikeouts in a career-high 8.1 innings of work.

Over his last three starts, the left-handed junior has had tough luck but has been very sharp, compiling a 0-3 record despite holding a 2.41 ERA over the stretch. In the 18.2 innings, he has allowed six runs (five earned) on 20 hits and eight walks with 12 strikeouts.

"Unfortunately, in this game pitchers get saddled with decisions that are beyond their control," Mathey said. "Giving up one run in 8.1 innings is a heck of an outing. He threw like a champion today. He's been throwing well as of late. Hopefully we can hit for him and he can stay on this nice roll.

"Like I told our team after the game, we came in facing the division-leading team on their own turf and we've played them hard and can get the series tomorrow."

With Central Michigan's win over Toledo today, the MAC West now sports a three-way tie atop the division again between UT, CMU and EMU. Meanwhile, NIU moves up to second place.

The Huskies and Eagles close out the series tomorrow at 12p.m. CT. The rubber match mound matchup features NIU RHP Tony Manville (6-1 | 5.44 ERA) versus EMU RHP Corey Chaffins (6-3 | 4.81 ERA).

Ohio 6, Buffalo 4
BUFFALO, N.Y.-Ohio reliever Ryan Burgett came on in the fifth inning of a tight game between the Bobcats and Buffalo and limited the host Bulls to just one run the rest of the way as the ‘Cats picked up a 6-4 win Sunday in the series finale at the Amherst Audubon.

The Bobcats, who won the series two games to one, improved to 22-25 and 7-14 in the Mid-American Conference, while the Bulls dropped to 11-32 and 2-18 in the league.

Burgett (2-0), a senior righthander, allowed just a run on three hits in the game's last four and two-thirds innings. Starter Matt Robin lasted four and a third and gave up three runs on six hits with three strikeouts and two walks.

Buffalo reliever Jesse Reinstein (0-2) took the loss after giving up two runs on two hits with two walks in just two-thirds of an inning. Starter Cameron Copping went seven and two-thirds innings, giving up three earned runs on seven hits with five strikeouts and one walk.

Ohio left fielder Kory Burkhart went 3-for-5 with two runs scored, while center fielder Ethan Newton scored twice to go along with his two hits. That duo atoned for a rare off day after going a combined 0-for-10 on Saturday against the Bulls. Third baseman/second baseman Bryan Barnes knocked in two runs as well.

UB catcher Tom Murphy, designated hitter Jordan Camp and left fielder Eric Bryce all had two hits for the Bulls. Bryce drove in two as well.

Ohio got two runs in the first when Newton reached on a double to right and came around on Burkhart's misplayed ground ball. Right fielder Adam Gecewich then knocked in Burkhart with a single to center.

The ‘Cats increased the lead to 3-0 on a double to deep center by first baseman Taylor Emody, but Buffalo responded with a two-run homer to right by Bryce to chop the lead to one.

UB tied the game at 3-all on a sacrifice fly to right by Murphy in the fifth.

Ohio pulled ahead in the eighth when Burkhart, who led off with a triple down the right field line, came around to score on Barnes' sac fly to center. However, the Bulls answered with a Camp single down the right field line to knot the game at 4-all.

The ‘Cats loaded the bases in the ninth and took a 5-4 lead when Barnes drew a bases loaded walk and tacked on another when pinch-hitter Doug Holmes' RBI groundout to second scored Newton.

Burgett retired the Bulls in order in the ninth as two hitters sent comebackers right back to him on the mound and Pollock ended it as he grounded out to Garrett Black at short.

The ‘Cats host Dayton on Tuesday at 6 p.m. ET before welcoming Akron for a three-games series next weekend.

Miami 3, Kent State 2
KENT, Ohio -- Brad Gschwind drove home the go-ahead run with a sacrifice fly in the eighth inning and Brooks Fiala struck out seven over eight innings, lifting Miami to a 3-2 win over 28th-ranked Kent State Sunday afternoon at Schoonover Stadium. The win ended a two-game losing skid and clinched a spot in the Mid-American Conference Tournament for the RedHawks.

After falling behind 1-0 on a George Roberts RBI double in the second, Miami took the lead on a two-run homer by Kyle Weldon in the fourth. Gschwind had singled with one out in the previous at-bat.

Kent State answered in the bottom of the frame on a solo home run by catcher David Lyon to tie the game at 2-2.

Miami threatened in the seventh, putting its first two batters on first and second, but came up empty. Adam Weisenburger walked before a Bryce Redeker single to left. Bryan Beaver tried to sacrifice, but the force was made at third for the first out. Redeker was thrown out at third trying to steal before a strikeout ended the inning.

But the RedHawks wouldn't waste a second chance. In the next trip to the plate, Miami took a 3-2 lead. With one out, Ryan Brenner was hit by a pitch, then Jon Edgington singled. A double steal put both runners in scoring position, setting up Gschwind for a sacrifice fly to right.

Fiala improved his record to 5-4 with his third straight win. He allowed just six hits and did not walk a batter during the contest. Sam Dawes retired all three batters in the ninth -- two on strikeouts -- to earn his team-high eighth save of the year.

Miami has a pair of encounters with Cincinnati this week. The RedHawks travel to Marge Schott Stadium on Tuesday for a 6:30 contest, then host the Bearcats Wednesday at 6 p.m.

Bowling Green 5, Akron 1
BOWLING GREEN, Ohio - The University of Akron baseball team dropped the rubber match of its Mid-American Conference series against Bowling Green, 5-1, on Sunday afternoon.

The game was the finale of the clubs' Mid-American Conference series that was scheduled to be played at Lee R. Jackson Baseball Field on the UA campus, but was relocated to Bowling Green after this week's inclement weather made Jackson Field unplayable. Akron was still the home team in the game.

Junior Drew Turocy recorded three singles to lead Akron (12-33, 5-16 MAC) at the plate. Starter Myles McVeigh was handed the loss after allowing two earned runs in 4.2-innings. Relievers Scott Foster and Benjamin Danziger combined to throw 4.1-innings of relief and allow no earned runs. Charles Wooten went the distance for BGSU to pick up the win.

Bowling Green (17-26, 10-11) grabbed an early lead in the bottom of the first. Frank Berry reached on a lead-off infield single and eventually scored on a Myles McVeigh wild pitch.

James Sheltrown tied the game in the bottom of the second with an RBI single to left field that scored Samuel Trecaso. Trecaso had reached when he was hit by a pitch to start the inning.

Bowling Green plated three runs in the fifth to take a 4-1 advantage. Frank Berry drew a lead off walk from McVeigh and then scored on Jeremy Shay's RBI single. The Falcons added on a pair of unearned runs in the inning after a Sheltrown error continued the frame. Ryan Schlater would drive in a run with a sacrifice fly and Patrick Lancaster singled in Shay.

The Falcons took advantage of a second Akron error to tack on a run in the seventh. Shay reached on an error by shortstop Sam Watkins and would come around to score.

The Zips host West Virginia on Tuesday at Canal Park. First pitch is set for 3:00 p.m. The game is scheduled to be carried live on 1350 WARF.

Central Michigan 7, Toledo 6
MOUNT PLEASANT - Central Michigan is alone in first place in the Mid-American Conference West Division.

Sam Russell's sacrifice fly scored William Arnold with the game-winning run in the bottom of the ninth inning, capping a 7-6 win that saw the Chippewas scratch out single runs in seven different innings at Theunissen Stadium on Sunday.

"What a hard-fought game," said CMU head coach Steve Jaksa. "Neither team blinked and each team played hard all the way. We just ended up with one more run at the end of the day. I'm just really happy with our guys and the way they played today."

CMU improves to 26-21 overall, 14-7 in the MAC with the win. The Chippewas have a one-game lead over Toledo (24-22, 13-8 MAC) and Eastern Michigan (31-17, 13-8 MAC) with six conference games remaining.

Nate Theunissen's RBI groundout in the first and Robbie Harman's squeeze bunt in the second staked the Chippewas to an early 2-0 lead, but Toledo pushed across a pair of runs in the top of the third to tie the score. The Rockets loaded the bases with nobody out in the third, but managed only two runs: Wes White scored on Jeff Cola's double-play groundout, and Jim Vahalik plated an unearned run on a passed ball.

Senior leftfielder Tom Howard put the Chippewas back in front in the fourth, driving a 1-2 pitch off the wall in center for a double that scored Sam Russell from first.

From there, the teams traded single runs in the top and bottom halves of the fifth and sixth innings. Toledo tied the score at 3-3 in the fifth when Dan Sherwood tripled to right, then was awarded home when Harman's relay throw skipped out of play. The Rockets returned the favor in the bottom half, as shortstop Chris Dudics mishandled a grounder with two outs that allowed Brendan Emmett to score from third.

Toledo again tied the score with another unearned run in the top of the sixth. With runners on second and third, CMU catcher William Arnold couldn't handle a pitch high and away, and Ben Hammer scored from third. The unearned tally knotted the score at 4-4.

The Rockets summoned Adam Tyson from the bullpen to start the bottom of the sixth, and Howard drove his second pitch over the wall in right for his third homer of the season. Howard finished 3-for-4 with a single, double, home run and two runs batted in on Sunday.

Russell, who was 2-for-3 with two runs and two RBIs, appeared to deliver an insurance run in the seventh with his two-out single that plated Jordan Dean and extended the Chippewas' lead to 6-4. Toledo, however, led off the ninth with back-to-back singles by Andy Mix and White, and the pair advanced to second and third on Vahalik's sacrifice bunt. Cola later singled with two outs to score both Mix and White, but Cola was thrown out at second to end the inning.

CMU's first three hitters reached base against Toledo closer Matt Zahel in the ninth, and with one out Russell's fly ball to right brought in Arnold with the winning run.

Mike Nixon worked the final four innings to improve to 2-0 for the Chippewas. He allowed two earned runs on six hits while striking out three. Zahel fell to 1-3 with the loss.

The Chippewas are back in action Wednesday, hosting Michigan State in a nonconference tilt at Theunissen Stadium. First pitch is set for 3:05 p.m.

Western Michigan 5, Ball State 4
MUNCIE, Ind.- Western Michigan made use of three Ball State errors, recording a 5-4, 12-inning victory to take a series sweep over the Cardinals Sunday. Troy Forton was one of five Bronco pitchers to see the mound and picked up the win, tossing 5.0 innings of relief.

With the win, WMU improved to 22-25 on the season and 10-11 in Mid-American Conference play, keeping its MAC Tournament hopes alive.

Western Michigan trailed 4-1 after five innings, but pulled even with two runs in the seventh and another in the eighth. Jimmy Martinez reached on a walk with one out in the 12th, moved to second on a single by Zach Thoma and booked it home for the winning run on an RBI single by Ryan McMillin.

WMU's fourth pitcher of the day, Forton entered in the sixth and shut down the Cardinals for the next five innings to give WMU its chance at a comeback. He allowed just two hits, walked two and fanned seven batters. Eric Heckaman gave up a single and a walk in the 12th, but hung on for his seventh save of the season and second in as many days.

"Forton was remarkable in relief and McMillin's RBI in the 12th is hard to put into words," said WMU head coach Billy Gernon. "We never backed off and showed tremendous grit and desire all weekend."

Martinez, McMillin and Jack Scanlon (RBI) each had two hits for the Broncos. Four of WMU's five runs were scored unearned. It was Western Michigan's 20th game of the season that had been decided by two runs or less and the fourth win in a row for the Brown & Gold.

With eight games left in the regular season, WMU approaches a four-game homestand, hosting Michigan State Tuesday, May 10, and Central Michigan next weekend, May 13-15. Western Michigan will officially dedicate Robert J. Bobb Stadium at Hyames Field against CMU, May 14.