Sycamores Knock Off Hoosiers in Midweek Affair
April 28, 2010
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. - Ryan Strausborger had three hits to lead Indiana State to a 17-4 win over the Indiana baseball team on Wednesday at Sembower Field. Tyler Rogers had two hits for the Hoosiers (20-19), while Robby Ort hit a three-run homer to right field for the Sycamores (27-12).
The Sycamores jumped out to an early 4-0 lead and then broke the game open with a five-run sixth to run away with the victory. Blake Drake (2-0) picked up the win with three solid innings, and the impressive relief performance of Brett Merkley helped buoy the visitors. Merkley tossed three shutout innings, allowing just a hit and a walk. Jerry Kleman fell to 1-2 on the year after collecting the loss for the Hoosiers.
ISU scored four in the first on three hits and a crucial error. Kleman got Strausborger on a popout before surrendering a slicing double to left center to Kyle Burnam. He surrendered back-to-back walks to load the bases, but then got a grounder to short. Michael Basil got the out at second, but his throw to first for the double play sailed high, allowing two runs to score. ISU went on to get runs on an RBI double from Tyler Graham and a run-scoring single by Phil Liniger to make it 4-0.
The Hoosiers cut the lead in half in the second, as Alex Dickerson led off with a double and Josh Lyon walked two batters later. Rogers then ripped a double to deep right center to score Dickerson, and Lyon later came home on an RBI groundout by Wes Wilson. Drake rebounded to end the inning with a strikeout, limiting the damage to a pair of tallies.
ISU bounced back with a pair of runs in the top of the fourth, with Strausborger bringing home a pair on a two-run single to make it 6-2. The Hoosiers looked poised to strike back after consecutive walks to start the botton of the inning, but Lyon's hard grounder was stabbed nicely by Merkley, who turned a 1-6-3 double play to put two down and a runner at third. Merkley then retired Rogers on a grounder to short to keep Indiana off the scoreboard.
The Sycamores then delivered the killer inning, scoring five runs on five hits in the sixth. The Hoosiers rallied in the seventh, as Basil delivered a bases-loaded walk with nobody out to make it 11-3. But Brandon Flora bounced back, getting a strikeout and a Dickerson sac fly to leave two on with two out. Michael Earley then ripped a pitch to deep right center, but Strausborger tracked it beautifully, robbing Earley of a likely triple. The senior went 0-for-3 with two walks to see his hitting streak snapped at 15 games. ISU added two in the eighth and four in the ninth to result in the final score.
Indiana returns to action this weekend for a three-game set with Purdue. The Boilers and Hoosiers will square off at 3:05 on Friday at Sembower Field, with Saturday and Sunday contests at 1 p.m. Admission is free to all Indiana baseball home games. Live audio and statistics will also be available at IUHoosiers.com.
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