Illinois State Hits Past Evansville in Series Opener, 9-4
May 19, 2011
NORMAL, Ill. - Illinois State freshmen Mike Hollenbeck and Brock Stewart each collected three RBI with 2-for-4 efforts, as the Redbirds came from behind to beat Missouri Valley Conference foe Evansville, 9-4, Thursday evening at Duffy Bass Field in Normal, Ill. ISU (33-16, 11-8 MVC) outhit the Purple Aces (28-21, 7-11 MVC) 12-to-7, including five doubles.
Corey Maines (9-3) earned the victory, allowing three runs - all in the first inning - on six hits, with five strikeouts and four walks through 6.1 innings of work. Evansville starter Kyle Lloyd (4-6) suffered the loss, giving up six runs on seven hits over four innings, while striking out three and walking three.
"Maines settled in after the first inning and gave our offense a chance to really get going," Illinois State head coach Mark Kingston said. "We were then able to come up with some big hits in the third inning that carried us the rest of the way."
Evansville jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the top of the first inning thanks to a two-RBI double by Cody Fick that scored Trentt Copeland and Eric Stamets, followed by Greg Wallace's groundout that plated Fick. Illinois State responded in the bottom of the frame, as Chad Hinshaw reached on a leadoff walk, advanced to second with a stolen base, and scored on a double by David Fallon.
The Redbirds proceeded to take the lead with a five-run third inning, beginning with a Tyler McNeely single that drove in Brett Kay. Stewart then doubled down the right field line to score Fallon and Kevin Tokarski. Hollenbeck plated two more on a single that allowed McNeely and Stewart to come home, putting Illinois State ahead, 6-3.
Stewart added to ISU's advantage in the fifth inning with a single that scored Ryan Court (who extended his hitting streak to 10-consecutive games). Evansville tallied one more run in the seventh on a single by Fick that scored Copeland, but the Redbirds regained a four-run lead in the bottom of the seventh thanks to a Hollenbeck double that plated Court. ISU capped off its offensive output in the eighth inning on a bunt by Tokarski that squeezed Hinshaw home from third.
Illinois State will try to clinch the three-game series Friday, with game two scheduled for a 4:30 p.m. first pitch at Duffy Bass Field. ISU's Dan Savas (3-4) is expected to face Cole Isom (5-5).
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