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Thursday, May 30
The Indiana Daily Student

sports baseball

Bats in full swing, runs not

The IU baseball team is getting its hits thus far in 2011.

The results in the win-loss ledger have largely relied on capitalizing on those hits. The previous weekend was no different.

Two wins and a loss in the Tennessee Tournament in Knoxville, Tenn., saw the Hoosiers

(6-4) earn at least nine hits in each contest, but the run discrepancy in the differing outcomes was clear.

IU claimed 6-5 and 6-3 victories against Morehead State and host Tennessee, respectively — the former came in 13 innings Friday — but the Hoosiers mustered just two runs on 11 hits Sunday in a 6-2 loss to Bradley.

“We still haven’t clicked offensively yet, leaving a lot of guys on and really not getting the tune on RBIs like we can and have in the past,” IU coach Tracy Smith said. “I’m still waiting for us to kind of put it together offensively so we can enjoy one of these things and not let it be a nail-biter the whole time.”

Smith and his ballclub certainly experienced those nail-biters during the weekend.
The win against Morehead State didn’t go final until senior T.C. Knipp hit a walk-off line drive in the bottom of the 13th to bat in the winning run.

Similarly, IU produced complete offense Saturday in the top of the eighth against the Volunteers, scoring three runs with as many hits, to pull away after trailing 3-2.

Sunday was a different story.

IU could not recover after allowing a fifth-inning grand slam by the Braves’ designated hitter Brad Kimball. The base-clearing homer was one of just four hits on the day for Bradley; the Braves got the majority of their runners on base by virtue of eight Hoosier walks.

“We have some pretty good hitters we’ve hit in the past and have hit for multiple games in the past that just aren’t getting hits right now,” Smith said. “When that starts to happen, I think we’ll start scoring a few more runs, and we won’t have as close a ball game, so we can actually put some people away and extend the lead.”

The scoring effect has manifested itself in much of IU’s young season.

The Hoosiers have averaged more than six runs in their six wins, one of which was a 14-run wallop of Texas A&M Corpus Christi on Feb. 25. In IU’s four losses, however, the team has managed just 2.5 runs.

IU has averaged more than 10 hits through 10 games and has only been out-hit once in the Feb. 19 loss to Boston College.

Knipp said it’s just a matter of time before the runs pick up with more consistency.

“We know our bats are going to be there,” Knipp said. “Just in general, I feel like our bats will be there when it matters.”

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