April 23, 2011
Site: Evanston, Ill. (Rocky Miller Park)
Score: Purdue 9, Northwestern 7
Records: NU (12-22, 4-6 Big Ten), Purdue (26-12, 6-4 Big Ten)
Next NU Event: Game 2 of doubleheader, 3 p.m.
EVANSTON, Ill. -- Northwestern rallied from an early five-run deficit to take the lead but was edged by Purdue 9-7 in the first game of a doubleheader Saturday at Rocky Miller Park.
Michael Jahns got the start for the Wildcats and ran into trouble in the top of the first. Purdue put five runs on the board, though just one run was earned as Northwestern committed two errors in the frame.
NU got one run back against Boilermakers' ace Matt Morgan in the bottom of the first as Trevor Stevens hit a leadoff double and scored on an RBI single by Jack Havey to make it 5-1.
Purdue pushed its lead back to five in the third on an RBI single by David Miller before Northwestern got right back in the game in the bottom half. With the top of the order leading off, the first five batters in the inning all reached. Chris Lashmet plated one with a single before another hit by Havey loaded the bases for Kyle Ruchim who plated two with a double to right-center. Jack Livingston came on to pinch hit and delivered a sacrifice fly to get the Wildcats within 6-5.
Morgan entered the contest with a 2.65 ERA, but NU continued to rough him up in the fourth and chased him from the game. His day was done after allowing a walk to Hamilton Wise and then a single to Stevens. Blake Mascarello came on in relief but allowed an RBI single to Lashmet and a sac fly to Havey give Northwestern a 7-6 lead.
Havey, who had entered the game in relief of Jahns in the fourth, provided the Wildcats with 2 1/3 innings of scoreless relief. He allowed just two hits and one walk while striking three against the Boilermakers' potent offense.
Ethan Bramschreiber came on to pitch the seventh for NU and Purdue put two men into scoring position with one out for Tyler Spillner. It appeared Bramschreiber got Spiller on a called third strike on a 2-2 offering, but he didn't get the call and Spillner came through with a two-run single to give the visitors the lead.
After Northwestern left two men on in the bottom of the seventh, Bramschreiber struggled with his control in the ensuing half inning. Three walks loaded the bases and Bramschreiber went to 2-0 on Spillner before the Wildcats brought on Paul Snieder. Spillner took a ball to go to 3-0 before Snieder got him on a popup to short to keep it a one-run game.
After the NU went down in order in the bottom of the eighth, Cameron Perkins added a big insurance run with a home run in the top of the ninth. Mascarello, who worked five scoreless innings to get the win, gave way to Nick Wittgren in the ninth who earned the save.
Stevens led the Wildcats with three hits and three runs scored.
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