After being swept by the Ball State University Cardinals, Head Coach Dan Simonds’ Miami University men’s baseball team (12-15) decided to clean house in the bullpen to defeat a local rival.
Simonds’ men didn’t have to go far Tuesday as they defeated the Xavier University Musketeers (7-21) 5-1. The Red and White called on nine different arms to get the job done and end the bleeding from the weekend.
“We played a very good baseball game today,” Simonds said. “The defense was terrific. We turned three double plays and the short stop had some big, big plays. We used nine pitchers and they did what they needed to do. We only walked one or two guys and that’s what we need to do.”
Sophomore Lance Kingrey was the winning arm for the Red and White, allowing only one hit in one inning of play.
The Red and White took charge early in the contest when shortstop Ryan Kaup picked up the lumber with an RBI single. They kept steady on the mound and allowed their teammates to add insurance to the lead when junior Adam Weisenburger knocked in two more runs with a single in the third stanza. But the Musketeers fought back for a scrappy run in the bottom of the inning and the game was still up for grabs at 3-1 RedHawks.
“The pitchers did a great job and hitters stood up the pitchers and got a couple clutch hits,” Weisenburger said. “We played good defense and got the victory. We worked as a unit.”
Junior Jon Edgington distanced the victory parkway foes with a two RBI double in the fourth inning and the Red and White were back in the driver’s seat with a 5-1 advantage. RedHawk hurlers kept the Muskie lumber serene through the seventh inning before the home crowd got antsy and the players responded with az big inning. The Musketeers bridged the gap with three straight hits to lead off the inning and cashed in twice, making the score 5-3.
“We got to swing the bats better and have more competitive at-bats,” Simonds said. “We have fallen short here in the first two weekends of Mid-American Conference (MAC) play and we are a better hitting team then we have shown. We have faced some of the best pitching staffs in the MAC in Central Michigan and Ball State but we still have to step up and do something against those types of pitching staffs.”
Sophomore closer Jordan Jankowski came in throwing flames the next inning and slammed the door on any hopes that remained for the Musketeers. Jankowski remained steady and pitched out of trouble for his fifth save this season.
The Red and White look to fight back in the MAC in their next contest with a game against Northern Illinois University launching a three game series at 6 p.m. Friday. The contest also jump starts a five game stretch in Oxford for the RedHawks.