WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (Purdue Sports) — Ryan Beard did not surrender a hit until the seventh inning and Jacson McGowan drove in all four runs, as the roommates led Purdue baseball to a 4-1 win vs. Valparaiso on Wednesday at Alexander Field.
Beard (1-1) struck out a season-high seven over 6 2/3 innings of one-run ball. He retired 20 of the first 23 batters he faced, working a trio of 1-2-3 innings in the process. The lefty retired at least five consecutive batters three times.
McGowan connected for his seventh home run of the season and 15th as a Boilermaker while posting his third four-RBI game of 2018, matching his career high. He also delivered a two-out RBI single in the first inning and drew a bases-loaded walk in the bottom of the third.
Alec Olund doubled twice as part of a three-hit game. Harry Shipley reached base safely at least twice for the fifth consecutive game. He's 10-for-18 with a .619 on-base percentage in the last five games dating back to the nightcap of the St. Patrick's Day doubleheader Saint Louis.
Valparaiso's Chad Jacob broke up Beard's no-hit bid with a two-out double down the left field line in the top of the seventh. He scored moments later on a base hit from Scott Kapers.
Bo Hofstra and Ross Learnard teamed up to close out the victory on the mound. The Purdue bullpen has pitched 11 consecutive scoreless innings dating back to the eighth inning of the March 18 loss at Saint Louis.
The Boilermakers (11-10) were just 2-for-12 with runners in scoring position. McGowan delivered both hits, highlighted by the two-out RBI single in the first inning that allowed Purdue to avoid squandering Shipley reaching second base to begin the frame.
The Boilermakers loaded the bases three times in the third inning after a leadoff walk to Tyler Powers combined with Shipley and Skyler Hunter both reaching on sacrifice bunts. But the only run Purdue would score in the frame came on the bases-loaded walk to McGowan.
Four Valparaiso (7-14) relief pitchers teamed up for 5 2/3 innings of five-hit relief. The only runs they surrendered came on McGowan's two-run homer in the bottom of the fifth. McGowan had not homered since March 3.
The Boilermakers return to action Friday when they begin Big Ten play at Penn State. The first pitch of the series opener is set for 6:30 p.m. ET.
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