Indiana baseball took on Michigan this weekend, earning its third straight series win and eighth conference win overall.
In the final game of the series, freshman Carter Mathison hit his second home run of the weekend. In doing so, he broke an Indiana record that had not been touched in more than 13 years.
Mathison came into the weekend series with 13 home runs, just one shy of Alex Dickerson's freshman home run record set in 2009. He tied Dickerson in game one of the series with a solo home run to give Indiana its final lead before Michigan won, taking a 1-0 advantage in the series.
The power-hitting freshman notched the record-breaking home run just two days later in the final game of the series. In the fifth inning of Sunday’s game, Mathison hit a three-run home run to put his name in the Indiana baseball record book. After Indiana secured a 10-8 win, head coach Jeff Mercer and the rest of the team shared a special moment honoring Mathison's home run.
“I didn't realize that was the record breaker,” Mercer said. “One of his teammates had the ball, Tucker Schank. In our team meeting, we were celebrating, and Schank said, ‘Hey, this is Carter’s 15th home run to break the record,’ and we gave it to Carter.”
Mathison now sits at 15 home runs on the year, leading all rookies in the Big Ten. Mathison is also tied with junior teammate Matthew Ellis for most home runs on the team.
“Carter is such a humble and down-to-earth young man that it wouldn't shock me if he didn't know,” Mercer said. “He is so excited for the win, but what an incredible achievement. What a record to break.”
Mathison finished the series 5-12 against the Wolverines with three extra base hits, six runs scored and five RBI’s. After the weekend, he now leads his team in OPS, runs, total bases and slugging percentage and is tied for second in walks.
As the team heads into the final weeks of the regular season, Mercer expects Mathison and the rest of the Hoosiers to keep the same mindset in order to continue their recent success.
“I believe in consistency, and I believe in a plan,” Mercer said. “I'm not changing my message based on the outcome of a game or situation. The same philosophies that led to success earlier in the year are going to lead to success later in the year.”
Mathison has the chance to keep building upon his record in the final weeks of the season. For its next game, Indiana will travel to the University of Louisville to take on the Cardinals on Tuesday, May 10.