BTN.com staff, April 8, 2012
It was another busy Sunday of action on Big Ten baseball diamonds. Perhaps the most exciting of the six games, Michigan State outlasted archrival Michigan, 10-8, in a 13-inning marathon. Illinois, Ohio State and Purdue also were victorious, as was Penn State, which went out of conference and nipped Canisius. Purdue's win over Northwestern gave it a two-game cushion atop the Big Ten standings.
Catch up on all of Sunday's action in this post, plus watch our "BTN Diamond Report" highlights from select games.
MICHIGAN STATE 10, MICHIGAN 8 – 13 Innings
The Michigan State baseball team remained perfect in extra-inning games this season with a 10-8 victory over Michigan in 13 innings Sunday afternoon at Ray Fisher Stadium. With the game tied at 8 in the top of the 13th, freshman right fielder Jimmy Pickens broke the stalemate with an RBI double to bring home Justin Scanlon; Pickens then scored to make it 10-8 as John Martinez hit an RBI single to center field. Read full recap at MSUSpartans.com.
ILLINOIS 11, INDIANA 6
Matt Milroy struck out a career-high 10 hitters over five scoreless innings of relief and Justin Parr blasted a two-out grand slam in the sixth inning to lift the Illini to an 11-6 win and a series victory over Indiana in front of 939 fans on Sunday. Milroy struck out the side twice and fanned five consecutive Hoosiers at one point to earn his first victory on the season and help Illinois improve to 17-12 overall, 3-3 in the Big Ten. Milroy's 10 strikeouts were the most by an Illini pitcher at Illinois Field since Jimmy Conroy fanned 11 against Michigan State on April 11, 2004. Read full recap at FightingIllini.com.
OHIO STATE 4, MINNESOTA 1
The Ohio State baseball team swept Minnesota for the first time since 2001 with a 4-1 victory Sunday at Nick Swisher Field at Bill Davis Stadium. With the win, the Buckeyes move to 18-12 on the year, 5-4 in the Big Ten, while Minnesota falls to 17-16, 3-3 in conference play. John Kuchno tossed six scoreless innings, allowing one hit and one walk, while striking out six to move to 5-1 on the season. Read full recap at OhioStateBuckeyes.com.
PURDUE 8, NORTHWESTERN 4
Cameron Perkins and Andrew Dixon both recorded three hits while accounting for three runs apiece, backing up a quality start from freshman Connor Podkul and leading No. 19 Purdue to an 8-4 victory at Northwestern on Sunday afternoon to complete a series sweep. The Boilermakers (24-5, 7-2 Big Ten) took a two-game lead in the Big Ten Conference standings by finishing off their first conference sweep on the road since 2001. Read full recap at PurdueSports.com.
NEBRASKA 9, IOWA 8
A game-tying two-RBI triple from Pat Kelly followed by a walk-off single from Kale Kiser completed a dramatic ninth-inning comeback by the Nebraska baseball team (22-12, 5-4 Big Ten) on Sunday afternoon at Hawks Field, as the Huskers rallied for a 9-8 win to take the three-game series over the Iowa Hawkeyes, 2-1. Read full recap at Huskers.com.
PENN STATE 4, CANISIUS 3
After senior Sean Deegan played hero on Saturday afternoon, it was sophomore Zach Ell's turn on Easter Sunday. With two outs in the bottom of the ninth and the game tied at 3, Ell doubled in freshman Aaron Novak to give the Nittany Lions their sixth-straight win. Junior Steven Hill went the distance for the Nittany Lions, allowing three runs while striking out eight hitters. Hill, who hurled his fifth-straight quality start, threw 122 pitches in the victory. Read full recap at GoPSUSports.com.