May 28, 2010
COLUMBUS, Ohio - Alex Dickerson and Josh Lyon each closed phenomenal sophomore campaigns with three hits, but the Indiana baseball team fell to Purdue on Friday, 15-5, to eliminate the Hoosiers from the Big Ten Tournament. The game marked the final contest in the careers of Indiana seniors Michael Earley, Sterling Mack, Tyler Rogers and Chris Squires.
Kevin Plawecki, Drew Madia and Cameron Perkins each had three hits for the Boilermakers, who tallied 16 hits to Indiana's 12. The Hoosiers rallied from an 8-3 deficit to bring the tying run to the plate in the seventh, but Purdue scored four in the eighth and three in the ninth to put the game away.
Drew Wurdack pitched up the win with 6 2/3 innings of work, while Brad Schreiber was credited with his second save of the year after tossing 2 1/3 scoreless frames. Matt Carr picked up the loss, allowing eight runs in four innings.
The Boilers struck first in the game, plating a trio of runs in the third to unlock a scoreless contest. After Eric Charles was hit by a pitch to lead off the inning, Tyler Spillner executed a hit-and-run to send him to third with nobody out. Jonathan Lilly then delivered a sacrifice fly to make it 1-0 Purdue. Carr rebounded to get the next hitter on a foulout, but Madia ripped the first pitch he saw over the centerfield wall to give PU a 3-0 advantage.
IU scored an unearned run in the third to get on the scoreboard, as Mack scored on an error by the shortstop to make it 3-1. But Purdue came right back with another sac fly in the fourth to regain a three-run lead at 4-1.
The Hoosiers then drew within one with a pair of runs in the bottom of the fourth. Earley led off the frame with a single, and Lyon followed by ripping a ball to deep left center, but it was caught just in front of the wall for out number one. After Earley swiped second, Rogers followed with an infield single to put runners at the corners. Mack followed, and the senior hit a one-hopper that cleared the head of the second baseman and trickled into right field to score Earley and make it 4-2. With Dylan Swift at the plate, Mack took off for second, and as the throw bounced in, Rogers broke for home, beating the relay throw from the shortstop to trim the deficit to 4-3. But Wurdack recovered to get Swift and Michael Basil to strike out to end the frame with no further damage.
Purdue landed the crucial blow in the fifth. Carr walked the leadoff man and Ryan Bridges followed by getting a check-swing single to third. Madia then drew a walk of his own, and Plawecki made Carr pay by delivering a single to center to gain a 5-3 edge. That chased Carr from the ballgame in favor of Squires. The senior got a soft grounder to first for out number one, but a run came home to make it 6-3. With Perkins at the plate and runners at second and third, Squires was called for a balk on the first pitch, scoring Madia for a 7-3 lead. Perkins then dropped in an RBI single to push the advantage to 8-3.
The Hoosiers got a run back in the sixth, when a Swift single plated Lyon to make it 8-4 Boilers. Then in the seventh, IU put together one final rally with two out. Dickerson started things with a single to left center, and Earley drew a walk to follow him onto the bases. Lyon fell behind 1-2, but roped a single to center to make it 8-5 and bring the tying run to the plate in the form of Rogers. The Lafayette, Ind., native got ahead 2-0, but fouled off the next two pitches and was retired on a flyout to right to end the threat.
Purdue left no doubt by scoring four in the eighth on five hits and three in the ninth on three hits and an error. Dickerson wrapped up his second season in an IU uniform with a .419 average, 99 hits (tied for third all-time), 24 home runs (second), 75 RBI (fifth), 19 doubles (seventh) and an .805 slugging percentage (third). He will enter his junior season with 38 longballs, just nine home runs shy of the school record.
As a team, the Hoosiers hit a school-record 85 home runs, with four players finishing in double digits. Earley's 13 are tied for 14th in school history, while Lyon and Micah Johnson each mashed 11. Indiana concludes its season at 28-27, the third consecutive winning season for the Hoosiers, as IU made the Big Ten Tournament for the third straight year. It is the first time in school history that Indiana has advanced to the tourney three times in a row.