April 4, 2012
YPSILANTI, Mich. - Taking a break from Big Ten play, the Michigan State baseball team defeated Eastern Michigan, 6-1, Wednesday night at Oestrike Stadium. The Spartans improved to 18-8 for the season and have won 14 of their last 16 games.
With the game tied at 1 after five innings, Michigan State broke the game open with a five-run sixth inning to take control.
"We were fortunate enough to string some hits together in the sixth," said MSU head coach Jake Boss. "We hit a few hard and also took advantage of some opportunities, and we were able to put a big number up on the board. I thought our pitchers made pitches when they needed to, and we played another game of solid defense."
Jordan Keur led off with the decisive sixth with a walk and Tony Wieber was hit by a pitch to give MSU its first two base runners before Joel Fisher drove in Keur with an RBI single to left center. Ryan Krill and John Martinez followed up with back-to-back singles, and Martinez's hit up the middle brought home Wieber to make it 3-1 MSU. A Jimmy Pickens RBI groundout made it 4-1, and Ryan Jones finished the big inning with a two-run single to center.
That's all the run support the Spartan pitching staff needed, as the only run it allowed to Eastern Michigan (10-18) came in the second.
Making his second career start, freshman Mick VanVossen scattered four hits in four innings in his second straight no decision. He gave way to Trey Popp in the fifth, and Popp responded by pitching two scoreless frames in the fifth and sixth to earn his second win of the season. Bryce Jenney also pitched scoreless innings in the seventh and eighth, while David Garner retired the Eagles in order in the ninth.
EMU was limited to just six hits in the game.
"Mick was much improved from his start a week ago, which is what we were looking for," said Boss, as VanVossen gave up five runs in 4 1/3 innings to Central Michigan in his first start. "It was also good for the bullpen to get some work. Trey did a nice job for us, Bryce pitched one quick inning in the seventh and got out of a jam in the eighth, and it was good to see David come in and pitch well in the ninth."
Michigan State collected nine hits total at the plate. Boss, who went 2-for-4 with two stolen bases, hit his fourth homer of the season in the fourth to tie the game at 1. Ryan Krill also had two hits for MSU.
Tickets for the Crosstown Showdown against the Lugnuts, which are $10, are still available for tomorrow night's game. BTN will broadcast the game live, while 92.1 FM will air the game on radio.