Johnson Handcuffs Western Michigan

KALAMAZOO - Senior left-handed pitcher T.J. Johnson fired a seven-hitter and went the distance in leading Central Michigan University to a 7-2 Mid-American Conference win over Western Michigan University here Friday afternoon.

The win, coupled with Eastern Michigan's 4-2 loss at Northern Illinois, moved the Chippewas into first place in the MAC West with an 11-5 record. Now 25-20 for the season, CMU has won six games in a row.

Game two of the three-gamed set with the Broncos, now 17-26 and 5-11, will be here Saturday at 1 p.m.

Johnson raised his record to 5-3, allowing two earned runs. He didn't walk a batter and whiffed nine. He now has four complete games.

The Chippewas scored three runs in the first off WMU ace J.R. Mathes. Eric Cannon and J.T. Jones reached on infield singles and scored on a double over the right fielder's head by Jim Geldhof. An infield bouncer off the bat of Bryan Mitzel then scored Geldhof.

The Broncos bounced back with a run of their own in the bottom of the first on a single by Adam Rosales, a double by Justin Carter and a single by Mark Abro.

Central Michigan made it 4-1 with a run in the fourth when Jeff LaFavors Jr. doubled to left to lead off the inning and scored on Brian Campbell's single to left.

The Chippewas scored another run in the fifth for a 5-1 lead. With two outs, Kurtis Wells, Mitzel and LaFavors singled.

Wells belted his seventh homer of the season in the seventh inning, a towering two-run shot down the line in right, to give CMU a 7-1 edge. Scoring in front of him was Geldhof who was hit by a pitch.

Western Michigan picked up a run in the eighth inning when R.C. Dickerson ripped a single to center and Rosales doubled to deep left.

Cannon, Wells and LaFavors each had two hits to spark the Chippewas who chalked up 11 hits and did not have an error in the field.

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