Hoosiers Take MSU Series
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. - Joe Kemp collected three hits, drove in three runs and scored three times, leading the Indiana baseball team to an 11-3 victory over Michigan State on Monday afternoon at Sembower Field. The Hoosiers took three out of four games in the series, winning their first Big Ten set this season. IU improves to 25-23 (8-16 Big Ten), while the Spartans fall to 18-25 (7-13 Big Ten).
In addition to Kemp, junior first baseman Ryan Parker went 2-for-4 with one RBI, two runs, one stolen base and one double, while junior designated hitter Zach Boswell was 2-for-4 with three RBI and a two-bagger. Junior center fielder Reggie Watson and Brant each added two runs and one stolen base
Kemp kicked off the scoring in the first with a two-run blast to right field, his team-leading 10th home run of the season, to plate junior left fielder Jay Brant for a 2-0 advantage.
The Cream and Crimson added a single tally in the second stanza when senior catcher Kurt Weigle doubled in senior third baseman Corby Heckman.
Parker continued the attack in the home half of the third, placing a two-bagger just inside the right-field line to score Watson. With Kemp on third, Boswell knocked Spartan starter John Dwan (1-2) out of the game with an RBI double inside the first-base bag, bringing home Kemp for a 5-0 lead.
After MSU netted a couple of runs in the fourth, the Hoosiers struck back in the bottom half of the frame when sophomore second baseman Josh Richardson touched home on a wild pitch to make it 6-2. Kemp picked up his third RBI of the game with a base knock to right, scoring Watson for a five-run cushion.
Neither team crossed the plate the next two innings before Parker singled between walks to Kemp and Boswell to load the bases opening the seventh. Following a pop out, Richardson drove a sacrifice fly to the center-field wall to drive in Kemp. Parker pushed the IU lead to 9-2, scampering home on a wild pitch.
Closing out the scoring, Boswell ripped a two-RBI single by second baseman E.J. Daws with two down in the eighth. Brant and Parker raced home on the hit for the final Indiana runs.
Tony Clausen delivered a pinch-hit home run in the top of the ninth, but it was not enough as the Cream and Crimson earned its eighth Big Ten victory this year.
Making his first start of the campaign, right-hander Steve Nielsen pitched five innings, surrendering two earned runs on five hits. The senior is now 3-3 on the season.
Junior southpaw Adam Poole entered in relief and held the Spartans at bay, closing out the final four innings of the contest for his first career save. Poole held Michigan State to one earned run on two hits with five strikeouts and only one base on balls.
Indiana returns to action next weekend in Ann Arbor, Mich., against the Michigan Wolverines at Ray Fisher Stadium. The teams will open the series with a 6:35 p.m. start on Friday, May 13, before playing a doubleheader at 4:05 p.m. on Saturday, May 14. The series concludes with a 1 p.m. finale on Sunday, May 15.
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