DELAND, Fla. (Purdue Sports) – Purdue baseball overcame an early four-run deficit with a four-run inning for the fourth game in a row, but Stetson put together two more extended rallies to defeat the Boilermakers 11-6 Sunday in the championship game of the Westin Lake Mary Stetson Invitational.
Purdue (8-2) scored 29 runs over its three games in Florida this weekend, but never held the lead Sunday. The 4-4 tie after the Boilermakers’ four-run third inning was short lived. Stetson (9-1) scored on three different wild pitches in the bottom of the frame to regain the lead. The Hatters later blew the game open again with four runs in the seventh inning.
Ben Nisle and Harry Shipley both delivered clutch two-out, two-run hits. Shipley’s two-out single in the top of the sixth plated Nick Evarts and Evan Warden, with Warden scoring from first base after the runners were in motion on the pitch.
Shipley’s single made it a one-run game at 7-6 and prompted the Hatters to bring in their closer Brooks Wilson, who pitched over 100 innings as a starter in 2017. Wilson finished off the win with a 10-out save, retiring nine of the 10 batters he faced.
• The Boilermakers have scored at least four runs in an inning in four consecutive games in the same season for the first time since May 2011. The program also accomplished the feat in the final game of 2016 plus the first three games of 2017.
• Jacson McGowan walked twice but was held hitless for the first time this season, ending his career-high 11-game hit streak that dated back to the end of 2017. Skyler Hunter beat out an infield hit in the first inning to extend his hit streak to 10 consecutive games. Dalesandro has also been on base safely every game this year after recording an infield hit and a walk Sunday.
• For the weekend, Purdue’s productive 3-4-5 portion of the lineup all had on-base percentages over .500. McGowan (5-for-9, 2B, 2 HR, 6 RBI, 4 BB, HBP, 6 R) and Dalesandro (8-for-11, 2 2B, 4 RBI, 2 BB, Sac Fly, 3 R) both reached base safely in 10 of 14 plate appearances. Hunter also scored six times while reaching base safely in eight of his 15 plate appearances.
• Bo Hofstra was Purdue’s most effective pitcher of the day, working 2 2/3 innings of one-hit relief. He pitched over a leadoff double in the fourth and leadoff walk in the fifth. For the season, the freshman has surrendered just three this and three walks over 10 1/3 IP (0.58 WHIP).
• Dalesandro also helped out the pitchers by throwing out three base stealers on the day.
• Nisle tied the game with his two-out double to left field in the third inning. The freshman has 11 RBI in 10 games this season.
The bottom two spots in the Stetson lineup enjoyed a very productive day. Johnathan Meola, Nico Torino and Bruce Martin were a combined 4-for-6 with two walks, five RBI and three runs scored. Torino had the big hit of the second inning, a three-run double to the wall in left field. It was his first hit of the season. Martin replaced Torino in the top of the seventh and delivered an RBI double in his lone at-bat.
Purdue failed to retire the Hatters’ leadoff man in six consecutive frames from the second through seventh innings. The Boilermakers committed at least one error in both of Stetson’s four-run frames.
Stetson pitchers combined for 13 strikeouts. One week removed from throwing a no-hitter against George Washington, Purdue was able to get SU starter Mitchell Senger out of the game in the fifth inning after the left-hander registered nine strikeouts and four walks. All four runs the Boilermakers scored against him in the third inning were unearned after Senger threw the ball away on a bunt single by Warden and shortstop Jorge Arenas let a ball get through him with two on and one out.
Trent Johnson managed to post a zero in the sixth inning despite the first three batters of the frame reaching base safely. Dalesandro erased Torino’s leadoff single by throwing him on an attempted steal. Johnson came back and retired Stetson’s No. 3 and 4 hitters to end the threat.
Dalton Parker made his season debut Sunday after leading the team with six saves as a freshman in 2017. The Boilermakers were unable to record an out on consecutive bunts following a hit batsman to begin the seventh inning. Parker threw the ball away on the second bunt, allowing both runners to score on the play.
Purdue returns to action Friday when its begins a weekend series and its eight-game spring break trip at Tulane. First pitch in New Orleans is slated for 7:30 p.m. ET.
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