Indiana Daily Student

IU and Purdue set for midweek match-up

<p>Second baseman Justin Walker hits the ball to right field. IU has won all three games against Northwestern this season.&nbsp;</p>

Second baseman Justin Walker hits the ball to right field. IU has won all three games against Northwestern this season. 

Freshman infielder Justin Walker got his first taste of consistent play for IU baseball during a three-game series against Purdue at Bart Kaufman Field in early April. 

For Walker, it was not only his first major opportunity to prove himself as a reliable starter, but also his first time facing the team his father, Chris Walker, once played for. 

With his father looking on, Justin went five-for-12 while knocking in six runs over the three-game stretch. 

However, he did make a costly error in the ninth inning of the series opening loss for IU. 

“He’s always supporting me,” Walker said following IU’s 14-1 win against Purdue on April 7. “It’s not anything too much for him.”

IU was able to salvage the series by winning the last two games.

Now, Walker will play on the road against his father’s former team as the Hoosiers travel to West Lafayette, Indiana, for a game Wednesday.

Although Walker will be playing at Alexander Field and not Lambert Field, where his dad played while at Purdue, there will still be the motivation to pick up a win in IU’s final regular season game against an in-state opponent. 

IU is 9-1 this season against teams from the state of Indiana.

IU will send out freshman Tommy Sommer on the mound for his third start of the season.

Sommer will bring in a 1-0 record and a 2.16 ERA against Purdue’s starter, junior Ryan Beard.

Sommer will be making his first start since he threw four innings while giving up one run against Pacific on March 11.

This will be the first time this season that the Hoosiers will head into a midweek game after losing a weekend series. 

IU dropped two of three games to the Ohio State Buckeyes, moving them into a tie in fifth place with Purdue.

The last time the Hoosiers dropped a weekend series was when the team lost two of three games at Purdue last April.

The midweek matchup will not affect the standings, as it is slated as a non-conference game. 

Although the run differential in the three games IU and Purdue have placed each other in this season is 23-10 in IU’s favor, the second game is an outlier. 

That 14-1 win does not compare to the 4-2 win Purdue had in game one, nor the 7-5 win IU had in the 13-inning series finale. 

The midweek match-up will be televised on ESPNU with first pitch scheduled for 7 p.m. 

This will be the second time IU will be featured on national television this season, as that 13-inning win that the Hoosiers had was aired on Big Ten Network.

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