Vandy Downs Hoosiers at NCAA Tournament
May 30, 2009
LOUISVILLE, Ky. - Vanderbilt was able to pitch its way out of early danger and used timely hitting to jump out to an early lead in taking a 10-0 victory over the Indiana baseball team. The loss eliminated the Hoosiers (32-27) from their first NCAA Tournament since 1996. Vandy (35-26) advances in the loser's bracket of the Louisville Regional.
Matt Bashore picked up the loss, going 4 1/3 innings for Indiana. The lefty gave up eight hits and one walk in his final outing of the season, striking out seven. With his seven Ks, Bashore moves into a tie with Eric Jacques (1986-89) for the school's all-time strikeout record, posting 244 of his career. He also finished 2009 with 108 strikeouts, one off the mark set by Vernon Wilshere in 1936 and matched by Eric Arnett this season.
Kipp Schutz had a solid day offensively for Indiana, knocking three of the seven hits for the Hoosiers. With his 3-for-3 day, Schutz improved his team-leading average to .392 on the season. Vince Gonzalez added a pair of hits as well for IU in the loss.
Vandy struck quickly against Bashore. The Commodores got a leadoff home run from Brian Harris, a triple from Jonathan White and a double from Steven Liddle to plate two runs in the first. In the third, Vanderbilt added an unearned run to push the lead to 3-0. White was hit by a pitch with one out and stole second. On the next pitch, Bashore spun off the mound and had him picked off, but the throw to third sailed wide and White came around to score the Commodores' third run.
Meanwhile, Vandy starter Sonny Gray tapdanced his way around danger to keep IU off the scoreboard. The freshman got double plays in both the second and third innings, and then in the fifth the Hoosiers got the bases loaded and nobody out by way of three straight singles. Gray rebounded to strike out the next two hitters and retire Brian Lambert on a groundout to end the inning without surrendering a run.
That seemed to energize the Commodores, who, after being unable to muster a single hit off Bashore in the second, third and fourth, came out swinging in the fifth to plate five runs and chase the lefty from the game. Two singles and a hit batsman plated one run for Vandy, and that was followed by a two-run single from Liddle and a two-run double by Aaron Westlake to make it an 8-0 ballgame. The Commodores tacked on solo runs in both the sixth and seventh to result in the final score.
Senior Chris Hervey, who did not start for the Hoosiers, finished off his Indiana career in fine fashion, delivering a pinch-hit single in the ninth inning for his 148th career hit. The St. James, N.Y., native, who, along with Joe Vicini, is one of just two seniors on the roster, wrapped up his four years with a .306 average and a school record 38 times being hit by a pitch.
Indiana concludes its 2009 campaign at 32-27 after winning its first Big Ten Tournament championship since 1996. With a 16-7 conference record, IU finished with its best Big Ten winning percentage since 1939.
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