Indiana Daily Student

IU baseball to play home opener Wednesday against Purdue

<p>Then-sophomore Cole Barr rounds third base and shakes hands with Coach Dan Held on April 3, 2019, at Bart Kaufman Field. IU will play Purdue on Wednesday in Bloomington.</p>

Then-sophomore Cole Barr rounds third base and shakes hands with Coach Dan Held on April 3, 2019, at Bart Kaufman Field. IU will play Purdue on Wednesday in Bloomington.

IU baseball will play Purdue at 3:05 p.m. Wednesday at Bart Kaufman Field for its first home game of the season.

The team was scheduled to play Butler University in its home opener last week, but the game was canceled due to bad weather.

IU is coming off a 2-1 weekend tournament in Greenville, North Carolina, where it beat East Carolina University and High Point University and lost to No. 9 University of Mississippi. The weekend brought the team’s record to 6-3 for the season.

Purdue lost all three games in its tournament last weekend, which brought the Boilermakers' record to 6-4 for the season. The team lost 1-5 to No. 12 Duke University on Friday, No. 8 North Carolina State University 0-6 on Saturday and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill 5-6 in ten innings Sunday.

Purdue is 0-3 against ranked teams while IU is 2-3. IU won against then-No. 11 Louisiana State University on Feb. 15 and then-No. 17 East Carolina on Friday. The team lost to Ole Miss once and LSU twice. UNC was ranked No. 23 when it defeated Purdue on Sunday.

Purdue has had a strong defense so far this season. The team had one error in each game last weekend and zero errors in its tournament the weekend before. IU has struggled with errors this season, averaging about two per game, head coach Jeff Mercer said.

The pitching for Purdue has assisted the team in earning its 6-4 record this season. IU will look to wear Purdue’s pitchers out quickly as it has in many games this season, most notably in its series against LSU.

The Hoosiers continue to boast powerful offensive players in junior outfielder Elijah Dunham and sophomore outfielder Grant Richardson. The Boilermakers have solid hitters in seniors catcher Zac Fascia and outfielder Skyler Hunter and junior outfielder Ben Nisle, but none so far have compared to Dunham and Richardson.

Dunham has a .485 batting average for the season, four doubles, a home run and five runs batted in. Richardson has hit four home runs and has nine RBIs. His batting average is .438 for the season.

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