Indiana Opens Big Ten Play with 5-3 Win over Michigan
March 21, 2014
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. - In its Big Ten opener, the Indiana baseball team (11-8) earned a 5-3 victory over Michigan (8-13-1) at Bart Kaufman Field. Junior second baseman Casey Rodrigue went 3-for-5 with three runs batted in, one run scored and one stolen base.
Southpaw Joey DeNato picked up his fourth win in five decisions this season. The senior allowed three runs on four hits in 5 1/3 innings with five strikeouts.
DeNato moved into a tie for the top spot on IU's career strikeouts list with 244 and into second with 298 career innings (322 is first). He remains second with 28 career wins (30 is first).
Sophomore Scott Effross earned his second save of the season as he tossed 2 2/3 scoreless frames with three hits and four Ks.
Despite stranding 16 runners, the Hoosiers won for the sixth time in eight games and improved their home mark to a perfect 4-0.
Rodrigue greeted Michigan reliever Logan McAnallen with a two-run, two-out triple to push across the first scores of the ballgame in the second. Junior first baseman Sam Travis brought Rodrigue home with a single to make it 3-0.
DeNato escaped a jam in each of the first two innings. Michigan led off with a double to start the game and loaded the bases with one out in the second, only to come up empty.
He retired nine of the next 11 Wolverines he faced before he allowed three runs in the sixth. U-M threatened for more but sophomore southpaw Will Coursen-Carr stranded the tying run at second with an inning-ending punchout.
Rodrigue struck again in the seventh, first in the field. With two down and runners on second and third, he made a great lunging grab of a soft line drive to keep the Hoosiers ahead by one run. In the bottom half, Rodrigue accounted for the final score of the game with a RBI fielder's choice.
Michigan put runners on the corners with no outs in the ninth, but Effross retired the final three in order to close it out.
Head Coach Tracy Smith
RHP Scott Effross
LHP Joey DeNato
The series resumes Saturday afternoon with a 2:05 p.m. first pitch and concludes Sunday at 1:05 p.m. Game three will be televised on BTN.
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