Illinois State Wins Valley-Opener at Indiana State
March 30, 2012
TERRE HAUTE, Ind. - Eric Aguilera went 3-for-4 with a home run and Chris Razo pitched six innings without allowing an earned run to lift Illinois State to a 3-2 Missouri Valley Conference win at Indiana State Friday night at Bob Warn Field. The Redbirds improved to 17-6 and 1-0 in the Valley, while Indiana State fell to 21-6 and 2-2.
"I thought our team competed well tonight and showed good poise," Illinois State head coach Mark Kingston said. "We didn't feel like we were tight because it was the first conference game. We felt like we are a good team, and we played like that."
Along with Aguilera's offensive contributions, Zac Johnson went 2-for-3 with one RBI and one run scored, and Matt Mirabal was 2-for-4 with one run. Ryan Walterhouse led Indiana State with a 2-for-3 effort. Dakota Bacus (4-2) suffered the Sycamore loss after allowing eight earned runs through eight innings. Razo improved to 4-1 and registered six strikeouts for the Redbirds. After Justin Hauer threw one scoreless inning of relief, Kenny Long pitched the final two shutout frames with three strikeouts to register his seventh save of the season.
Following a scoreless first inning, Indiana State took a 1-0 lead in the second. Jeremy Lucas led off with a single and advanced to second on a throwing error. He then moved to third on a groundout and scored on another groundout by Jon Hedges.
Illinois State responded with its first lead in the fourth inning. Mirabal led off with a double to right center field, and Johnson drove him home with another double. Johnson then scored on a two-out single by Aguilera. However, Indiana State answered in the fifth, as Tyler Wampler singled and later came home on a fielding error.
With the game tied, 2-2, in the seventh inning, Aguilera hit a towering home run over the right-center field fence to regain the Redbird lead. Razo, Hauer and Long teamed up to hold Indiana State scoreless through the final four innings to secure the win.
Illinois State will go for the series win Saturday in game two of the three-game Valley set. First pitch is scheduled for 1 p.m. CT, with live coverage available on WHOW 1520 AM / 92.3 FM and GoRedbirds.com and WJBC.com.
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