Hoosiers Gut Out 16-Inning Win at #18 Coastal Carolina, 2-1
Feb. 20, 2011
MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. - Behind the strength of a spectacular pitching performance by a quartet of Hoosiers, the Indiana University baseball team (1-2) gutted out a 2-1 road victory over #18 Coastal Carolina (2-1) in 16 innings.
Starting pitcher Blake Monar picked up a "no decision" after working the bump for five innings, allowing just two hits and one run while striking out five Chanticleers. The bullpen came on in the sixth and delivered 11 consecutive innings of shutout baseball, allowing just four hits in that stretch.
Matt Carr was the first reliever to take the mound, toeing the rubber for 3.2 innings and giving up zero hits. Matt Igel kept it coming when he entered the game with two outs in the ninth. The Vincennes, Ind., native hurled 74 pitches over 4.1 innings before handing the ball over to freshman Ryan Halstead to start the 14th frame. Halstead, making his collegiate debut, took care of the rest by allowing a lone hit in the final three innings to earn the `W.'
Thirteen different position players saw action in the four-hour-and-31-minute marathon. Micah Johnson, Casey Smith and Dustin DeMuth combined to plate the game-deciding second run for Indiana. Following a Johnson single to centerfield, Smith laid down a sacrifice bunt to move his teammate into scoring position. DeMuth was up next and stroked his third hit of the game, driving in a speedy Johnson from second to put IU on top, 2-1.
Halstead made his way back to the mound for the bottom half of the 16th inning and forced three fly balls to clinch the Hoosier triumph.
Coastal struck first, converting on a sacrifice fly in the bottom of the third. The game was all-square two innings later when Johnson scored his first of two runs on the day. With Johnson caught in a run down rounding third base, the Chanticleer's catcher threw one high and the third baseman was able to handle it, making way for Johnson to notch the run.
The subsequent innings provided plenty of drama. Both squads had multiple opportunities to end it with runners in scoring position, but neither could convert; due in large part to timely pitching and stellar defensive plays on both sides. The most impressive of all, however, may have been Alex Dickerson's out-field assist for the third out of the 12th inning. As Coastal's Tucker Frawley steamed toward home plate, Ty Downing was waiting for him after corralling Dickerson's bullet from left field.
In addition to the defensive play of the game, Dickerson also extended his hitting streak to 20 games (dating back to last season) with a single in his first at-bat.
Next weekend, the Hoosiers head to the Lone Star State for three games at the Kleberg Bank Classic, hosted on the campus of Texas A&M Corpus Christi. Indiana is slated to face #9 UCONN and 2006 and 2007 national champion Oregon State in addition to the Islanders of TAMCC.
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