Feb. 27, 2010
ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. - Kyle Helisek pitched seven strong innings and Villanova (5-0) defeated the Indiana baseball team 8-1 on Saturday at Progress Energy Park. Jerrud Sabourin had a pair of hits in a losing effort for the Hoosiers, who fell to 2-4 on the season.
Matt Szczur had three hits for the Wildcats, while David Koczirka, Matt Fleishman and Kevin Wager had two each. Justin Bencsko scored three runs and Koczirka had three RBI off the bench as well for Villanova. Helisek held the Hoosiers to four hits, as Ethan Wilson and Michael Basil had the only two hits not by Sabourin. Helisek walked five, but his defense made several huge plays in the game to lift him up for the win.
The Hoosiers got on the board quickly, as Brian Lambert led off with a walk and stole second. Sabourin followed by rapping a single to right field to score Lambert and give IU a 1-0 lead. The junior first baseman is 6-for-8 at the Big Ten/BIG EAST Challenge with four RBI. He is 8-for-10 with a walk in his last 11 plate appearances.
IU saw its rallies snuffed out in the second, third and fourth, as the Hoosiers stranded base runners in each inning without scoring. And in the top of the fifth, Villanova finally scratched a run across to tie the game. Back-to-back singles put runners at the corners for VU, and a wild pitch scored the first run of the game. Still, with a runner on third and nobody out, starter Walker Stadler rebounded with a strikeout, a flyout and a groundout to end the frame with no further damage. Stadler collected the loss for the Hoosiers, but allowed just six hits and three runs in 5 2/3 innings of work.
In the sixth, the Wildcats got consecutive one-out walks and a wild pitch moved runners to second and third. Koczirka came off the bench as a pinch-hitter, and delivered a sac fly to give Nova the lead. Fleishman followed with a double to right to plate a second run and the Wildcats pushed their edge to 3-1. Matt Ernest came out of the pen for IU and induced a groundout to end the inning.
In the seventh, the Wildcats scored a trio of unearned runs off of Ernest on a crucial RBI triple from Szczur, a squeeze bunt and a Koczirka RBI single. Villanova added another unearned run in the eighth and an insurance run in the ninth to result in the final score. Casey Smith
threw the final 2 1/3 innings for Indiana, surrendering two hits and two runs, one earned, striking out two in the process.
The Hoosiers return to action on Sunday in the final day of the Challenge, as they will face Connecticut at 10 a.m. at the Naimoli Complex in St. Petersburg. Live stats and audio will be available on IUHoosiers.com.