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Saturday, March 2
The Indiana Daily Student

sports baseball

Baseball defeats ISU with clutch scoring

Baseball vs. Indiana State

The IU baseball team got a bit of a scare from one of its in-state rivals Wednesday.

However, two familiar faces answered the bell for the Hoosiers.

After IU gave up three runs in the top of the seventh inning, sophomore second baseman Micah Johnson and senior outfielder T.C. Knipp batted in three to cement a 6-3 win against Indiana State at Sembower Field.

The inning not only completed a perfect day at the plate for Johnson, who finished 3-for-3 with a run and the winning RBI, it also marked the second straight game in which Knipp had a crucial multi-RBI hit late to propel the Hoosiers (21-11) to a victory.
IU coach Tracy Smith said the team’s continued clutch hitting was huge.

“I’d like to see us save some of that clutch hitting,” Smith said. “(Indiana State is) a good baseball team. They’re playing very well right now. Anything can happen in a one-run, so I was really pleased to see us extend it to three.”

The game appeared to be in hand with a 3-0 IU lead until the seventh inning.

Freshman pitcher Brian Korte threw six shutout innings and allowed no hits through five frames, extending his streak to nine dating back to last week’s game at Miami (Ohio). However, the lefty walked in a run and allowed a two-RBI single in the seventh inning.

Johnson’s stage was set by senior catcher Wes Wilson’s leadoff double and junior outfielder Alex Dickerson’s single, which put runners on first and third. Johnson then batted in Wilson to reclaim the lead.

Johnson said he didn’t try to do too much before earning what proved to be the game-clinching hit.

“I was just looking for a fastball. I’ve been struggling the past week, so I’ve been really working on quieting my swing down,” Johnson said. “I’m not going to do too much. I’m just looking for a single.”

Following two strikeouts, Knipp hit a single that drove in both Dickerson and Johnson to secure the game’s final tally.

Knipp acknowledged his growing trend of success in the clutch.

“I just try to stay relaxed, just stay with my approach,” he said. “I feel like if I try and do something I’m not capable of, I’m not going to have the success, so just staying within myself is what I try and do when I’m up there in those situations.”

However, the Hoosiers might have been able to secure the game earlier if not for baserunning miscues.

Johnson was tagged out on an attempt at third in the first inning, and freshman third baseman Dustin DeMuth was caught on an attempted double in the third and then ruled out on a slide into home in the fourth.

Smith was upset with the call at home but put the blame for the failed first-inning steal attempt on himself.

“I thought they were going to throw into second,” he said. “That was on me, but yeah, there were a couple of other ones there. We’ve got to tighten that up, or the weekend games can come down to that.”

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