March 22, 2009
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Jake Boss Jr.
LANSING, Mich. - The Michigan State baseball team used a four-run eighth inning to defeat Oakland, 7-5, and complete a three-game sweep of the Golden Grizzlies on Sunday (March 22) afternoon at Oldsmobile Park. The sweep is the first for MSU (6-14) this season and the program's first series sweep since defeating Northwestern four consecutive times in 2007.
"Sweeps are not easy to accomplish and Oakland University is a good ballclub and they are going to have a good year," said MSU head coach Jake Boss Jr. "We needed to play well today and we did that. We got some big hits when we needed them and our offense was able to pick us up."
Trailing 5-3 heading into the bottom of the eighth inning, Eli Boike led off with a single and later scored to cut the deficit to 5-4 when Eric Roof doubled him in. Oakland reliever Chad Yinger then issued an intentional walk to Jeff Holm and load the bases for Johnny Lee, whose perfectly placed bunt single scored Chris Roberts from third to knot the game at five. One batter later, Bo Felt ripped a double to left field to score Holm and Roof and give the Spartans a 7-5 lead.
"Johnny Lee took a lot of pressure off me with his bunt so I was just trying to get a hit and not have to go to extra innings," said Felt.
Peter Wolff came on in the ninth to close the game and retired all three batters for his second save of the year.
"We told Peter yesterday that he would get an opportunity today and he made the most of his opportunity," Boss said. "Hopefully, he can settle into that role because I really like him there."
Roof got the Spartans on the board in the first when he doubled in Chris Roberts.
The Golden Grizzlies tied the game in the second off an RBI single by Tim Ryan and took a 4-1 lead with three more runs in the third off three hits and one MSU error.
An RBI single by Seth Williams and sacrifice fly by Boike pulled the Spartans within one in the bottom of the fourth, 4-3. The Spartans kept the pressure on OU, loading the bases but Kyle Teague got Eric Roof to ground out and end the threat.
Oakland added another solo run to make the score 5-3 heading into the eighth.
The Spartans will close their four-game home stand on Wednesday (March 22) against Western Michigan at Oldsmobile Park. First pitch is scheduled for 3:05 p.m.