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Tuesday, Nov. 28
The Indiana Daily Student

sports baseball

Indiana beats Evansville in ninth inning

IU Vs. University of Evansville Baseball

The final midweek, single-game series played at Sembower Field ended in dramatic fashion Tuesday as the Hoosiers (27-26, 13-8 Big Ten) got a come-from-behind victory against the Evansville Purple Aces (30-23, 9-9 MVC), winning 5-4.

“I wouldn’t say our minds were on today,” Head Coach Tracy Smith said. “They were probably more thinking about what’s going on Thursday (the Ohio State series). We’re going to have to play better and more focused baseball than we have the last three or four games.”

The Purple Aces would jump out to a three-run lead off the Hoosiers’ starting pitcher and junior Hunter Brown.

Brown, appearing in just his fourth game of the season, would allow the lead-off hitter to get on base and score in the second, third and fourth innings.
Coach Smith brought in sophomore Brian Korte to pitch in relief for Brown, after Brown gave up a run scoring double to Evansville’s Jake Mahon, a freshman.

“It would have been nice to get three or more,” Smith said when asked about getting more innings out of Brown. “We felt the only way we hurt ourselves is we walked people.”

Korte, a sophomore, closed out the fourth inning, not allowing a run.

“I was just trying to hold and keep us in the game, Korte said. “I had pretty good
command of my fastball and just tried to get that across to keep runners off base.”
Korte pitched five innings, giving up two runs on four hits, while walking one and striking out one.

“Brian was big,” Smith said. “That was good what he did today. Not only did it save our pen, but it gave him a little confidence, and we got the win.”

Offensively, IU continues to struggle scoring runs when runners get on. In the first four innings Tuesday, IU left seven runners on base. In the three-game series May 11-13 against Northwestern, IU left 30 runners on.

The Hoosiers finally capitalized on a scoring chance in the fifth inning against Evansville as they loaded the bases with no outs off Evansville’s starting pitcher and freshman Ryan Billo.

Freshman Kyle Schwarber scored as junior Michael Basil reached on a fielder’s choice. With runners at first and third, a wild pitch by Billo allowed sophomore Dillon Dooney to score. First baseman and junior Trace Knoblauch, who later became the hero of the game, collected an infield single to score Basil. The score was knotted up at 3.

After Evansville scored one run in the eighth to take a 4-3 lead, IU rallied in the ninth.
Schwarber led off the inning by reaching base for the third time on an error. He then advanced to second base as the ball got by Evansville junior Jason Hockemeyer. After advancing to third base on a fly ball out, Schwarber scored the game-tying run on a single by junior Micah Johnson.

With Knoblauch at the plate, Johnson stole second, putting the game-winning run in scoring position. With a one-two count, he drove the ball to right center field for a single, scoring Johnson and giving the Hoosiers a 5-4 win.

“I was taking a few pitches to allow Micah to get to second so a hit can score him,” Knoblauch said. “And then with two strikes I was just trying to put the bat on the ball and get a hit. It is good to get a solid win, a good comeback win. We did not play our best, but it shows when we don’t play our best we can still come and get wins.”

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