Redbirds Falter in 10-3 Loss to Missouri State
May 6, 2011
NORMAL, Ill. - The Illinois State baseball team allowed nine earned runs thanks to seven base on balls and three fielding errors, while stranding 13 runners left on base in an uncharacteristic 10-3 loss to Missouri State Friday afternoon in Missouri Valley Conference action at Duffy Bass Field.
With the defeat, the Redbirds (27-14, 7-6) fell a half game behind the Bears in the Valley race. Missouri State improved to 26-17 overall and 7-5 in league play.
The contest appeared like it was on course to be the expected pitchers' duel, as ISU's Corey Maines and MSU's Nick Petree needed only 30 minutes to deal through the first three innings of play. Missouri State scored first when Luke Voit launched his fifth home run of the season with a solo shot to left field off of Maines in the bottom of the third. The Redbirds responded immediately when Matt Mirabal singled home Kevin Tokarski, who had walked earlier in the third inning.
With the game knotted, 1-1, Voit posted his second and final RBI of the game with a base hit to left field to put the Bears up, 2-1. Again, ISU countered in its next at bat. This time, Tokarski took the ball deep to left field for his third home run of the season.
Missouri State regained the lead, 3-2, in the top of the sixth when Brent Seifert drove home Spike Helms. The Bears put the game out of the reach over the next two frames with three runs in the seventh inning and four more in the eighth. The Redbirds threatened in the bottom of the eighth inning, but were only able to plate a single run for the final 10-3 margin.
Petree earned the win for MSU and improved his record to 7-1 on the season, while Maines fell to 8-2. It was Maines' second loss in his last three starts, as the ISU senior surrendered a season-high six runs and matched his season-high with four base on balls in 6.2 innings of work. The Redbird bullpen of Justin Hauer, Matt Werderitch and Ryan Camp came on in relief and combined to allow four runs, three of which were earned, over the final 2.1 innings.
Of the 13 Redbirds left on base, 11 were credited to the middle of the ISU lineup, as Ryan Court, Tyler McNeely and Mike Hollenbeck combined to bat 2-for-13 without an RBI in the game. Tokarski and Mirabal paced the Redbirds with two hits apiece, as the team combined for eight in the game.
Illinois State and Missouri State return to Duffy Bass Field Saturday for a 2 p.m. showdown.
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