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Tuesday, Feb. 27
The Indiana Daily Student

sports baseball

IU looks to gain confidence back

Junior Alex Dickerson knows that today’s game against Miami (Ohio) (22-18) only counts for one tally in the win or loss column, but coming off the Hoosiers’ first three-game losing streak this season, this is not an average midweek game.

“It’s a huge game maybe not so much for our record, but we just have to get confident again, especially after losing three straight,” Dickerson said. “I’m almost happy it is coming up Tuesday and not Wednesday so we don’t have to wait that long.”

After being swept this past weekend by Minnesota, the first time IU (25-15) has been swept in a series since 2008, the Hoosiers now find themselves looking up at the top of the Big Ten standings.

The Hoosiers are also looking for redemption against the RedHawks, as IU lost 6-1 April 5 in Oxford, Ohio.

In a game IU coach Tracy Smith called one of the “poorest mental games he has ever seen,” his Hoosiers committed three errors and issued nine free passes including five hit batsmen.

On a scheduled staff day, freshman Brian Korte pitched four innings of no-hit baseball before the bullpen collapsed in the seventh and eighth innings.

IU’s offense did not help Korte’s cause by striking out nine times, including four looking.

“Getting swept you are a little low right now, so I think it’s big to come in and get a win Tuesday,” Wilson said. “Midweek games are games we should win, and we know we let one slip away at Miami.”

Coming off a weekend against Minnesota where the Hoosier offense scored five runs in 27 innings, IU has only three starters hitting above .290: freshman Dustin DeMuth (.373), Dickerson (.359) and sophomore Micah Johnson (.325).

However, Johnson’s status is unknown for this afternoon’s contest as he sprained his ankle during game two of the Minnesota series.

With or without Johnson in the lineup, Smith said he knows that he needs a lineup full of guys who will make a pitcher work during their at-bats.

“I thought we would provide a little bit more power than what we’ve shown up to this point,” Smith said. “We’ve got to look at who is going to make the pitcher compete every pitch. We are halfway through the Big Ten season, and our offense hasn’t really changed since the first weekend.”

In a schedule that spans more than 50 games, Smith said he knows he has a good baseball team and it’s not time for his Hoosiers to panic.

“I think it starts with us, the coaches and leadership,” Smith said. “I never want to lose three games at home, but we have to make sure that they have the same confidence in us. I have not lost confidence in this team, and we have a lot of baseball left to play.”

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