Friday's MAC Baseball Results

Updated 4/16/2011

Friday's MAC Baseball Results
Ball State 7, Buffalo 4 (Game One)
Ball State 8, Buffalo 3 (Game Two)
Miami 9, Western Michigan 0
Bowling Green 6, Toledo 2
Central Michigan 2, Kent State 1
Akron 5, Eastern Michigan 2
Northern Illinois 5, Ohio 4

Game stories courtesy of MAC Home Sports Information Departments

Ball State 7, Buffalo 4 (Game One)
Ball State 8, Buffalo 3 (Game Two)
Box Score (Game One)
Box Score (Game Two)
 
BUFFALO, NY - Ball State combined to score nine runs in the first three innings of games one and two, helping the visiting Cardinals to a sweep of the Friday afternoon doubleheader at Amherst Audubon Field. Though the team received strong individual efforts, it was unable to come back from early deficits and lost both games, 7-4 and 8-3.

In the opening game, Ball State (10-23) earned a 4-0 lead before the Bulls could respond in the bottom of the third. Tom Murphy came through with a two-out single to left field with the bases loaded to cut the lead in half, 4-2. The offense would go quiet until two more runs came across in the bottom of the ninth. Three singles loaded the bases again for UB, and this time it was Matt Pollock who cashed in, hitting a 3-2 single just over the glove of a leaping third baseman, scoring Michael Burke and Alex Baldock. Kevin Crumb took the loss, giving up four runs (one earned) over six innings, striking out six but walking five. Freshman Cory Folk pitched three innings of relief.

Game two got off to a very rocky start as the Cardinals scored two runs in the first inning and three more in the third. After scoring three more runs in the fourth off of starter Josh Edwards, the bullpen was called into early action with one out and two men on base. Kevin Hughes stepped in with the two quick outs to escape the jam, then proceed to shut the door on the Ball State offense, throwing three hitless innings and striking out four. Then came Daniel Ginader, who also excelled, throwing 1.2 innings with only a hit and walk allowed. River McWilliams also added a hitless and scoreless inning of relief as the bullpen was a shining star in game two.

As for the offense, Buffalo's conference woes were only exacerbated as the starting nine only had six hits. It was the bottom of the order that was productive in the evening game, as Michael Burke and Andrew Smietana combine to go 4-7 in the seventh and ninth slots, respectively, and also all three runs batted in. Edwards took the loss as the starter, throwing 3.1 innings.

Buffalo (7-25, 0-11 MAC) will have a day off tomorrow with poor weather in the forecast. Game three of the series will be Sunday at 1 pm, weather permitting.

Miami 9, Western Michigan 0
Box Score
OXFORD, Ohio - Five Miami players registered multiple hits -- led by Kevin Bower with a career-high four -- and Mac Thoreson and Joe Neff combined on a four-hit shutout as the RedHawks defeated Western Michigan 9-0 Friday afternoon at McKie Field. Bryce Redeker drove in four on his two hits, while Brad Gschwind homered as part of his two-hit afternoon.

Neff (2-1) picked up his second win of the season, pitching the final five innings while tallying a career-high six strikeouts.

Miami (18-17, 6-4 MAC) reached double figures in hits for the 14th time this season, including five of the last seven contests. Going into the game, Bronco pitchers had a combined 3.45 earned run average and were allowing opposing hitters to a .257 batting average.

Ryan Kaup, who broke out of a 0-for-8 slump by getting on base in four of his five plate appearances on a hit, two walks and a fielding error, drove in the first Miami run in the second inning and later scored in the fourth. He singled home Adam Weisenburger, who was hit by a pitch and stole second, giving the RedHawks a 1-0 lead.

They added four more runs in the fourth inning on a sacrifice fly to right field by Jon Edgington that scored Weisenburger from third, a bases-loaded walk to Brad Gschwind and a two-run single by Redeker.

Thoreson struck out one and allowed two hits and a walk over the first four innings, but left the game after experiencing soreness in his hamstring during a few warm-up pitches for the top of the fifth inning. Neff came in to get loose, but the game experienced a 75-minute rain delay before the first batter. When the teams resumed play, Neff was nearly unhittable, allowing only a single and a double, while walking one over the final five frames.

Redeker added a two-run home run to left center in the sixth inning and Gschwind led off the eighth with a first-pitch shot over the left-field wall. Kyle Weldon scored the final run for Miami with a triple to right center field before sprinting home on a wild pitch.

WMU starter Brian Stroud (5-3) took the loss, allowing five earned runs in four innings. He allowed just six hits and walked a pair, while fanning two. The junior had allowed only 16 earned runs in 56.2 innings entering the contest.

The two teams will continue the series tomorrow afternoon at 3 p.m., weather permitting.

Bowling Green 6, Toledo 2
Box Score
BOWLING GREEN, Ohio -- For his second straight start sophomore pitcher Cody Apthorpe owned the opposing lineup, limiting the visiting Toledo Rockets to a pair of runs towards a complete game effort in the Falcons' 6-2 win on Friday afternoon. The Falcons battled blistering winds and bats but escaped The Stell victorious to gain ground in the Mid-American Conference standings and break an Toledo 11-game win streak.

The Windham, Ohio native went the distance, tossing his first career complete game in the win. Over the duration of the game he allowed two earned runs on nine hits and striking out four Rocket hitters with only 97 pitches. Apthorpe (3-2) allowed only one run on six hits through his first eight innings. Four times out of nine he had retired the side in order and five times had faced only three hitters in an inning. The MAC East pitcher of the week from two weeks ago silenced the top four spots of the Rocket line up, holding them to two hits over 15 at bats.

The Falcons' Matt Pitzulo (Poland, Ohio) plated the first run in the top of the first on a RBI double that plated junior Jon Berti (Troy, Mich.). Pitzulo lofted a fly ball to left field that took off in the afternoon's wind and carried all the way to the wall deep enough to score Berti from first base. The score ended a scoreless inning streak of 17.2 Toledo starter Mike Hamann (2-3) had accumulated over his last two starts.

After Toledo tied it up in their next at bat, BGSU retook the lead when Alex Davison (Grand Ledge, Mich.) grounded into a 5-4-3 double play with no outs and the bases loaded. The play resulted in two outs and Clay Duncan (Norwalk, Ohio) scoring from third base to give the Falcons a 2-1 advantage.

Duncan was also a part of a two-run sixth inning when he was hit by a pitch and advanced on the bases twice by way of a passed ball by UT reliever Cameron Palmer, one of which resulted in a run. Alex Davison came around to score after the freshman walked and stole second base then was driven in by senior captain Frank Berry (Virginia Beach, Va.) on a single to center field. The two-run sixth put the Falcons up 4-1 on the Rockets.

The Falcons posted a second two-run inning in the eighth when the Falcons took a 6-1 lead with a pair of insurance runs. Patrick Martin (Oregon, Ohio) walked to lead off the inning and stole second base with two outs. Berry singled deep in the hole to short to put runners on the corners before Andrew Kubuski (Elyria, Ohio) plated Martin with a single to left field. Jon Berti also found some green in left with a single that scored Berry.

Bowling Green (12-18, 6-4) matched its run count from their last two games combined on Friday afternoon. They cranked out 12 hits on the day to Toledo's nine and had at least one hit in seven of nine innings. Four of the Falcons' six runs were scored as a result of the runner being put on base by a walk or hit batsman. The top four spots in the Falcon line up that consisted of Berry, Kubuski, Berti and Pitzulo went a combined 8-for-16 (.500) with two runs scored and four RBI.

The BGSU win broke an 11-game winning streak the Rockets had began on March 30 in an 8-5 win over Oakland University and most recently included a 3-1 win over the Michigan Wolverines. It also ended a six-game conference win streak after sweeps over Akron and Buffalo in their last two weekends of play. The 11-game win streak that was snapped was the longest Toledo had accumulated over the last 30 years of the program's history.

The series continues on Saturday afternoon for a rematch between these two teams beginning at 1 p.m. from Warren Steller Field (Bowling Green, Ohio). Bowling Green sophomore Nick Bruns (2-2, 5.94 ERA) will match up with Kyle Shaw (4-1, 3.54 ERA) in game two action. Sunday's series finale will commence at 1 p.m.

With the win and Miami defeating Western Michigan 9-0 on Friday, the Falcons' remain tied for second place in the MAC East standings. Kent State lost its second conference game of the season to Central Michigan, so both the Falcons and RedHawks pick up a game in the standings and now trail by two games.

Central Michigan 2, Kent State 1
Box Score
MOUNT PLEASANT -- In a showdown between two of the Mid-American Conference's starting pitchers, Central Michigan rallied off the bullpen of Kent State for a walkoff win in the opening game of a three-game series on Friday at Theunissen Stadium.

Trent Howard fanned the first nine batters he faced and the Chippewas (17-17, 6-4 MAC) picked up their sixth-consecutive victory, snapping the Golden Flashes' (22-11, 8-2 MAC) 11-game winning streak.

Facing KSU's Andrew Chafin, who boasted the nation's best ERA among starting pitchers at 0.72, CMU rallied for a run in the eighth off the left-hander on a wind-blown two-out triple by Sam Russell and an RBI double by pinch hitter Tom Howard to tie the game at one.

In the ninth, Tyler Hall led off with a double into the gap in right and moved up on a sacrifice bunt by Brendan Emmett . After a two-out intentional walk was issued to Matt Faiman, Jordan Dean laced a 1-1 pitch into shallow center to plate the winning run and give the Chippewas six wins in their last seven league games.

Hall had two of CMU's six hits and Ben Klafczynski had two of KSU's six safeties.

Howard finished with seven innings of work, giving up a run on four hits and a walk while fanning 11. He retired the first 12 batters he faced before Klafczynski's leadoff single in the fifth, and stranded the bases loaded in the seventh.

Mike Nixon tossed 1 1/3 scoreless innings of relief and Dietrich Enns (3-1) picked up the win, retiring a pair of batters with the go-ahead run on third in the ninth.

Chafin allowed a run on four hits and struck out 13. Justin Gill (2-1) took the loss in relief, giving up a run on two hits and an intentional walk in 2/3 of a frame.

Game two of the series is scheduled for Saturday at 2:05 p.m.

Akron 5, Eastern Michigan 2
Box Score
YPSILANTI, Mich.-Four costly errors by the Eastern Michigan University baseball team paved the way for the University of Akron to take game one of a weekend series Friday afternoon, April 15, 5-2. The Eagles jumped out to an early 1-0 lead on Akron starter Andrew Brown, but sloppy EMU defense translated into several unearned runs for the visitors in the following innings.

The Eagles (19-14; 5-5 MAC) dropped their fourth straight Mid-American Conference tilt as the Zips (7-25; 1-9 MAC) picked-up their first conference win of the season.

The Green and White received strong offensive contributions from the top of the batting order as Ken Battiston, Brent Ohrman and Daniel Russell combined to go 7-for-12 on the afternoon. Battiston went 3-for-5 from the leadoff spot, Ohrman hit 2-for-3 with an RBI and Russell turned-in a 2-for-4 performance. Catcher Matt Hitt also went 2-for-4 with a run scored hitting from the ninth spot.

For the Zips, Sam Treasco and James Sheltrown went 2-for-4 with one RBI apiece. Jared Turocy (1-for-3) drove in a pair of runs and Tyler Begun also notched an RBI.

Brown (3-4) picked-up the win Friday, hurling eight innings while allowing two earned runs on nine hits with seven strikeouts and three walks. Chris Bassitt earned his fifth save of the season after striking out the side in the bottom of the ninth.

Robert Wendzicki (2-4) took the loss for the Eagles, tossing four and two-thirds innings while surrendering five runs, two earned, along with eight hits, two walks, and a pair of strikeouts.

Joe Battistelli pitched a solid four and one-third innings in relief for the Eagles, allowing just one hit. He also struck out two batters and needed just 52 total pitches.

Eastern Michigan scored the game's first run in the opening inning as Lee Longo plated Ohrman with a perfectly executed squeeze bunt. It was the third successful suicide play for the Eagles this season and Longo's 18th RBI.

Akron answered in the top of the second with three runs to gain the lead. A pair of singles put runners on first and second with no outs. A Longo fielding error allowed Bryan White to reach and load the bases. All three runners would come around to score on a pair of singles and a fielder's choice.

In the top of the third, the Eagles' infield defense came unraveled as consecutive throwing errors from third baseman Ben Magsig and another from Longo at first base resulted in the third unearned run of the contest and a 4-1 Akron advantage. Trecaso slapped a ground ball weakly to Longo who failed to step on first base in an attempt to hurry a throw home and nab White at the plate. The throw sailed wide of the catcher and White scored.

Akron tacked on another run in the fifth inning for a 5-2 lead. Following a leadoff double in the bottom half of that frame, Hitt came around to score on an Ohrman sacrifice groundout to cut the deficit to 5-2. The double was Hitt's fifth of the season.

Eastern Michigan threatened again in the eighth with runners at the corners and two outs. They failed to capitalize as Brown struck out Magsig with a rising fastball to end the inning.

In the ninth, Bassitt sent the Eagles down in order on swinging third strikes.

The middle game of the series is slated for Saturday afternoon at 3 p.m., weather permitting.

Northern Illinois 5, Ohio 4
Box Score
ATHENS, Ohio-The Northern Illinois baseball team finally broke through with four runs in the seventh inning against the host Bobcats and held off the home team in the ninth inning to capture a 5-4 win Friday evening in Bob Wren Stadium in the first of a three-game series between the two teams.

The Huskies improved to 16-16 overall and 7-3 in the Mid-American Conference, while Ohio dropped to 15-19 and 2-8 in the league.

NIU catcher Brett Frantini went 2-for-4 with three RBIs. Ohio got a 3-for-3 effort from center fielder Ethan Newton, while left fielder Jensen Painter drove in two.

NIU starter Zach Oates (3-5) got the win, pitching seven and two-thirds innings, allowing three runs on seven hits with one strikeout and one walk. Closer Kyle Glancy nailed down his eighth save after getting the game's last four outs and giving up one run on two hits with two strikeouts and one walk.

Ohio starter Seth Streich (0-5) was hit with the loss after he surrendered three earned runs on five hits with three strikeouts and three walks in six and two-thirds innings. Reliever Matt Robin allowed just a hit in the final two and one-third innings with one strikeout and one walk.

Painter put the Bobcats on top by a 2-0 score early when his two-run blast down the left field line cleared the wall in the first inning for his third homer of the year.

NIU plated a run in the second to cut the margin in half, but Streich cruised from there into the seventh inning, retiring 11 straight batters at one point.

The Huskies scored four times in the seventh, but Ohio got one in the bottom half of the eighth frame and in the ninth on an RBI double by second baseman Bryan Barnes and an RBI groundout by shortstop Garrett Black, respectively.

Ohio got runners to second and third with two out in its last at-bat and nearly won the game when right fielder Adam Gecewich torched a Glancy offering back up the box. However, the hurler snared the liner right by his head to clinch the victory for the visitors.

NIU left fielder Cory Krupp stole his ninth base in the top of the first inning, while Newton swiped his 15th in the bottom half.

The two teams are scheduled to continue the series Saturday at 3 p.m. ET at Bob Wren Stadium.