We had actual baseball last night at Alexander Field! One of the problems of being a “Northern” school, especially one with a natural grass field, is that Purdue often has to start the season with an extended road trip. While many schools in the South can start at home on college baseball’s universal start date of the third Friday in February, Purdue has to go on the road for the first few weeks.
Luckily, the home opener came last night against Northern Illinois, and it was a success. Purdue scored 14 runs on 12 hits with a comfortable 14–5 victory over the Huskies to move to 9–7 on the year. The win came thanks to a trio of big innings, as Purdue got four in the second, five in the fourth and five in the seventh. Paul Toetz Continued his hot hitting with a 3 for 4 night that resulted in 4 RBIs. Jake PaarA three-run double in the fourth was also a big hit, as it gave Purdue a 9–1 lead at that point. Jake Jarvis also had a solo home run, while Khal StephenWas successful moving to a midweek spot in the rotation.
Purdue has one last road non-conference series this weekend, and it’s somewhat close. boilers run facing south evansville to face the Purple Aces.
March 17 – 4 pm
March 18 – 3 p.m.
March 19 – 2 p.m.
The Aces have run hot and cold this year on their way to a 10-7 start. Last season they were a solid 32–24 team, but they finished runner-up in the Missouri Valley Conference at 14–6. They started the season losing all three games Troymidweek game at Kentuckyand with a series opener east michigan 0-5 to start. Since then, he has played very well. They would not win the last two games against EMU before winning the midweek game Southeast Missouri State and swept by four bowling Green,
On March 8 they had a midweek game at #8 Vanderbilt and losing 2–1 in 17 innings severely tested the Commodores. They then lost a series opener on middle tennessee Before taking on the final two, as well as a midweek game last night at Bellarmine. They are currently ranked 70th in the preliminary RPI, while Purdue is ranked 171st.
aces are given lead at the plate chase hug, batting .433 with 4 HR and 15 RBI. As a team they have 19 home runs compared to Purdue’s 23, but Purdue is led by Toetz with eight on the season. His team average was .273 and Danny Borgstrom The only other hitter at .300 to .317 is .
on the mound Donovan Schultz, tyler denuAnd Nick Smith The weekends have been consistent in terms of rotation. Each made four starts and Schultz pitched best with a 3.43 ERA and 2–1 record in 21 innings. Smith leads the team in innings pitched with 23 2/3 and in strikeouts with 28.
The real question for Purdue is how it will bounce back after being swept away ole miss, As I mentioned in that series wrap, if anything it was a productive series sweep. Purdue didn’t get shut out and had the final two games in the late innings, so it knows it can hang with one of the best teams in the country. That makes this weekend’s series crucial for building confidence going into Big Ten play next week Michigan State,
The starting league slate for Purdue is fairly well established, as Michigan State is 8-7. northwestern is 0-11, and Minnesota 3-15 is. A series win this weekend means Purdue could be off to a hot start in Big Ten play.