March 28, 2008
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. -
Northwestern was unable to get to three Purdue pitchers as the Boilermakers earned a 3-0 win Friday afternoon at Lambert Field in the Big Ten opener for both teams. Sophomore Joe Muraski went the distance on the mound four the Wildcats, surrendering just one earned run.
Both Muraski and Matt Bischoff for Purdue were in control on the mound through the opening half of the game. The Boilermakers (8-11, 1-0) had a pair of runners reach in the second inning, but Muraski recorded a strikeout of Eric Nielsen to work out of trouble.
The Wildcats' only baserunner against Bischoff through the first four frames was a first-inning walk by Jake Owens.
NU (4-10, 0-1) finally got its offense going in the top of the fifth as Chris Lashmet led off with a solid single right and fellow freshman Nate Roberts lined one back up the box with one out to give the Wildcats two aboard. However, Bischoff got a pair of flyouts to work out of trouble.
A pair of miscues by Northwestern allowed Purdue to score the game's first run in the bottom of the fifth. Jon Moore reached on a one-out error and then with two away was able to reach second safely after the 'Cats were unable to complete a pickoff throw to first. Nick Overmyer then drove Moore home from second with an RBI single to left.
Another single and a walk loaded the bases for the Boilermakers, but Muraski was able to get a deep flyout to keep the deficit at one.
The Wildcats had baserunners in each of the next two inning, including a leadoff single by Lashmet in the seventh, but couldn't push across the tying run.
NU mounted another threat in the eighth inning, but again came up just short. Pinch hitter Matt Gailey drew a one-out walk in his first collegiate plate appearance. Aaron Newman followed with a single to right to give the Wildcats two aboard with one down. Jake Owens then hit a line drive to right that Brandon Haveman was able to nab just before it reached the turf.
Purdue opted to turn to the bullpen as lefty Andy Loomis was brought on to face Jake Goebbert. The decision paid off as Loomis coaxed Goebbert into a deep flyout to right to preserve the one-run lead.
The Boilermakers tacked on a pair of big insurance runs in the bottom half of the eighth. Ryne White connected for a two-out solo home run to right to push the Purdue lead to 2-0. Following an error, Dan Black contributed a run-scoring double to increase the hosts' advantage to three.
Dan Lindblom worked around one hit in the ninth inning for Purdue to earn his second save of the season. Bischoff (1-2) got the win, surrendering four hits and three walks to go along with eight strikeouts in 7.2 innings of work.
Muraski (1-2) suffered the loss despite allowing just one earned run in eight innings of work. He allowed seven hits and three walks while striking out four. Lashmet and Roberts had two hits apiece for Northwestern, while White and Black each had two for the Boilermakers.
The teams continue their series Saturday with a doubleheader beginning at noon Central time.