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Sunday, April 14
The Indiana Daily Student

sports baseball

Hoosiers recover from early struggles with 10-5 win against Iowa

Baseball vs Iowa

Indiana scored 10 unanswered runs Sunday to rally from a 5-0 deficit and win the game 10-5, taking the series against the Iowa Hawkeyes, 2-1.

In the bottom of the seventh, Collin McEnery pinch-hit for freshman third baseman Chad Clark. The freshman pitcher/infielder came to the plate with two outs and with freshman catcher Kyle Schwarber at third, freshman first baseman Sam Travis standing on second and junior shortstop Michael Basil at first.

On the second pitch, he hit a ball that rolled into center field, and the Hoosiers took their first lead of the game.

“It was a huge situation for our team,” McEnery said. “I got called off the bench. I got in there looking for (a) first pitch fastball. I got it, but I took it. The pitcher came back with the same pitch next pitch. I was ready for it and drove it in between the third baseman and shortstop. I was pretty excited about it.”

After three pitching changes and four runs scored by the Hoosiers in the frame, redshirt freshman right fielder Tim O’Conner bounced into a 6-4-3 double play to end the inning.

For three innings, Iowa starter Sasha Kuebel had the Hoosiers under control, surrendering only one hit.

In the fourth, the Hoosiers scored twice on a two-run home run by Travis that traveled over the center field fence. The homer, Travis’s third of the season and second of the weekend, pushed his hitting streak to 15 games and his batting average to .398.

The Hoosiers drew even in the fifth courtesy of two-out hitting. Junior center fielder Justin Cureton laced a two-run triple off the left-center field fence to draw the Hoosiers to within one.

“After I hit the ball, I just started running,” he said. “I was thinking three right out of the box. I don’t think anyone was going to stop me. I have a lot of confidence in my speed.”

Schwarber pulled an RBI single through the right side, and Cureton scored easily.

The Hoosiers knocked Kuebel out of the game after 4.2 innings. The Hawkeyes’ freshman southpaw surrendered five runs — all earned — on six hits.

Smith said the Hoosiers did not change anything, they just got better results.

IU overcame a rough outing by senior starter Drew Leininger. Iowa scored two in the second and three in the third. In each inning, the lead-off runners reached base via a four-pitch walk and a hit batter, respectively.

Sophomore second baseman Dustin DeMuth said Smith kept the attitude positive.

“The whole time, Skip was in our ears saying ‘Hey, just keep playing, just keep playing. Things’ll fall,’” DeMuth said. “We broke it open, scored five there pretty quickly, got it tied and finally broke it open there in the later innings.”

They were able to do so because of the performance of sophomore reliever Ryan Halstead. In the fourth inning, he came in to pitch with a man on second. He struck out the batter looking.

DeMuth said Halstead, who pitched 5.1 innings of perfect baseball, looked like the Halstead of last season.

“He was outstanding today,” DeMuth said. “He looked like (he did) last year. Last year, I remember him coming in, walking around the mound, just knowing he was going to dominate. He looked back in that form today.”

Smith said this was a great win.

“I’m as proud of this win because of where we’ve been with our defensive woes and where we could’ve gone in that game had we succumbed to that negativity of an error,” he said. “I hope this is the one that turns us around.”

For coverage on Friday and Saturday's games, click here.

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