WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (Purdue Sports) — Even with just one hit over seven innings, Purdue baseball still had the tying run 90 feet from home plate in each of the final two frames, but could not pull even in a 2-1 loss to Indiana State on Wednesday at Alexander Field.
Ryan Beard (4 2/3 IP, 5 K) and Bo Hofstra (3 1/3 IP, 3 K) teamed up to allow just one earned run over eight innings, striking out eight. Both pitchers also picked off a runner at first base. The Boilermakers’ eight pitchers teamed up to work 19 innings of three-run ball in the two-game midweek series with ISU (18-14).
Down 2-0 entering the seventh inning, Purdue (16-16) had its leadoff man reach base safely in each of the final three frames. But it took a catcher’s interference and two-out bases-loaded walk to plate the Boilermakers’ lone run in the eighth inning. Ben Nisle opened the bottom of the ninth with a base hit, but his pinch runner Milo Beam was stranded at third to end the game.
Weston Rivers, Dalton Laney and Tyler Grauer all had successful outings on the mound for Indiana State despite entering the night having each worked less than 10 innings on the season. Rivers (1-0) pitched 5 2/3 innings of one-hit ball as the starter, retiring 17 of the 19 batters he faced, including the final nine in order. Grauer closed out the win by striking out three of the five batters he faced.
As a southpaw, Grauer entered the game with a 2-0 count on the left-handed hitting Evan Kennedy with the bases loaded and two outs in the eighth inning. Grauer threw three straight strikes to Kennedy to escape the jam via a strikeout. Pinch hitters Nick Evarts and Bryce Bonner also went down on strikes against Grauer with Beam in scoring position in the bottom of the ninth.
Nick Dalesandro finished the night 2-for-3 with a double and a walk. He connected for a two-bagger to right center in the first inning, but the Boilermakers didn’t record another hit until Braden Giroux opened the bottom of the eight with a pinch-hit infield single. Dalesandro also had an infield hit in the frame. Purdue caught a break when ISU’s Hayden Jaco was called for catcher’s interference as Skyler Hunter hit what looked to be an inning-ending grounder to second base. Jacson McGowan the drew the bases-loaded walk that forced in the Boilermakers’ lone run. ISU walked McGowan five times over the two games.
A three-base error on a dropped line drive to right field coupled with a sacrifice fly gave the Sycamores an early lead in the second inning. Jake Means recorded the game’s only run-scoring hit, a two-out RBI single in the fifth inning after Purdue intentionally walked Dane Giesler with a runner at second base. Means was the first batter that Hofstra faced.
Harry Shipley drew a walk in the third inning to extend his reached base safely to 10 consecutive games.
The Boilermakers return to action Friday when they open a three-game Big Ten series at Maryland. First pitch in College Park is set for 6:30 p.m. ET.