Redbirds Win Conference Opener Over Sycamores, 6-1
March 26, 2010
TERRE HAUTE, Ind. - Corey Maines limited Indiana State to three hits through the first five innings and slithered out of a bases-loaded, no-out situation with only one run surrendered in the sixth, to lead Illinois State to a 6-1 win over Indiana State at Bob Warn Field Friday afternoon.
Maines earned his third win and dropped his earned run average under two while helping the Redbirds (10-9, 1-0 MVC) snap the Sycamores (13-6, 0-1 MVC) six-game winning streak and open Missouri Valley Conference play with a win. Maines and the Redbirds stranded two Sycamore base runners in each of the first two innings while building a 3-0 lead, but the junior right-hander saved his best escape for the sixth after giving up singles to the first four batters. The Sycamores scored one run in the inning but a fly out to center and double play ended the threat.
"I felt like they were ripping every pitch that I threw," Maines said of the sixth. "The start of wasn't what I wanted, but it ended well and I gave up just one run instead of four. There was no tag on the pop up to center and then I knew I was one pitch away from getting out of the inning and that's what happened. I thought it sparked our team a little and hurt their confidence a little."
Indiana State starter Jacob Petricka (3-4) faced the minimum through two innings, but Chad Hinshaw led off the third with a single and stole a pair of bases to move into scoring postion. Petricka, like Maines in the early innings, worked out of the jam without allowing a run. Jake Thornton nearly scored for the Redbirds on a single by Zach Amrein in the fourth, but was cut down by Indiana State right fielder Levi Furguson while trying to score from second.
In the fifth inning, Hinshaw again led off with a single and swiped two more bags. Evan Kohli struck out to leave him at third, but Josh Colon singled with the infield in to plate Hinshaw and the Redbirds' first run. The hit sparked the Redbirds to three runs in the inning and Maines worked out of the jam in the sixth before handing the lead to reliever Kenny Long.
Long struck out five in three scoreless innings for his second save in as many games. Illinois State added two more runs in the eighth as five of the first six batters were issued free passes - four walks and a hit batter. Anthony Ruffolo drove in Matt Mirabal for the Redbirds' final run in the ninth.
Mirabal, Hinshaw and Ryan Court all had two hits for the Redbirds. Mirabal scored two runs and added a stolen base. Hinshaw was 2-for-3 with a walk and four steals in the contest. Illinois State walked seven times and outhit the Sycamores 10-7.
Illinois State and Indiana State will play a doubleheader Saturday starting at 1 p.m. due to the threat of poor weather conditions Sunday. Illinois State's Ryan Camp (3-2, 8.77 ERA) is expected to start the first game against Indiana State's Joe Rodriguez (2-1, 5.33) with senior left-hander Ryan Copeland (1-2, 6.60 ERA) expected to face Indiana State's Jason Van Skike (2-0, 4.44 ERA) in game two.
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