IU baseball ended its three-game losing streak when it beat the University of Cincinnati 6-2 Wednesday at Bart Kaufman Field.
The team’s record is now 9-6 for the season and 3-2 at home.
The Hoosiers have struggled offensively in their last three games, during which they stranded 30 runners on base. They only had six hits in their game Tuesday against the University of Evansville.
Head coach Jeff Mercer said the team’s offensive strategy of racking up the opposing team’s pitch count and bringing all the runners on the base path home was successful in Wednesday’s game.
“As long as we’re having dutiful at bats, I’m happy,” Mercer said.
Cincinnati’s starting pitcher junior Garrett Schoenle pitched six innings , during which he only allowed four hits and struck out seven batters. He threw 93 pitches before he was taken out. Mercer said he was satisfied with the way IU batted against Schoenle.
“That’s a daggone good midweek starter,” Mercer said. “He was low 90s almost the whole time and really executed.”
Junior infielder Drew Ashley reached base twice on walks and scored both times. IU only left three runners on base during the game — it is the first time the team has stranded fewer than five runners all year.
The team started out slow at the plate on Wednesday. IU didn’t hit until the third inning when senior infielder Jeremy Houston, the ninth player in the lineup, singled to right field. After Ashley was walked in the third inning, sophomore outfielder Grant Richardson hit a three-run home run to give IU the lead 3-1.
Richardson had four runs batted in and hit an RBI double in the fifth inning. He went 3-4 from the plate during the game. Mercer said he made the difference between a win and a loss for IU today.
Juniors outfielder Elijah Dunham and infielder Cole Barr both hit back-to-back doubles in the eighth inning. Dunham’s hit allowed Richardson and Barr to reach home plate and brought the score to 6-2.
Freshman pitcher David Platt started for the first time in his IU career. He pitched five innings, with four strikeouts, one walk and eight hits. He allowed two runs, making his earned run average 4.26 for the season.
“I thought I competed pretty well today,” Platt said. “I have a great defense behind me, so I had a lot of trust in them.”
Cincinnati hit well, but IU’s defense managed to keep it from scoring big. Cincinnati had 11 hits and left 10 runners on base in the game. The team scored in the second and fourth innings.
IU is scheduled to play the University of Memphis this weekend, starting at 4:05 p.m. Friday at Bart Kaufman Field.