Michigan State's post season hopes for an invite rest on winning the Big Ten tournament. Jake Boss is a terrific coach and person and his Spartans will be ready as the conference contest waits at the end of the season. Today they fell to Iowa as the Hawkeyes took the three game series 2-1 in East Lansing. Thankfully the great Zach Fisher broke the game down for us.
Michigan State fell to the Iowa Hawkeyes 9-4 today in East Lansing while losing the three game series 2-1!
Michigan State Defeated By Iowa, 9-4, Sunday
Spartans fall to Hawkeyes in series finale
EAST LANSING, Mich. -- Michigan State baseball was defeated by Iowa, 9-4, on Sunday in the finale of the three-game Big Ten Conference series at McLane Stadium at Kobs Field.
Iowa jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the first adding a run in the third for a 4-0 lead. MSU cut it to 4-3 in the sixth, before trading runs in the seventh before the Hawkeyes broke the game open with a four-run ninth inning.
“It was a tough day for sure. We got behind early and we were down 3-0 before we could even get our bullpen guy going. Give our guys credit, they kept fighting and scratching and clawing to get us back into, but unfortunately it got away from us in the ninth,” MSU head coach Jake Boss said.
MSU slid to 24-19 overall and 8-10 in B1G play while Iowa improves to 29-17 overall and 11-7 in conference action after winning the series, two games to one. The Hawkeyes won the bookends of the series, winning Friday’s game 3-2, while the Spartans won Saturday’s contest, 2-1.
Michigan State remains in eighth-place in the conference standings, battling for a berth in the B1G Tournament as the top eight teams qualify for the tournament May 24-28 in Bloomington, Indiana. MSU plays at Nebraska next weekend before wrapping up regular-season action with a three-game series against Michigan.
“It certainly isn’t going to get any easier for us as we’ve put ourselves in a tough spot, but like I’ve said all year, I love this group of kids and know they’re going to continue to fight and scratch and claw. We’ll give those guys a good effort for sure. All we’ve got to do is get into the tournament and good things can happen,” Boss said.
Michigan State had 10 hits Sunday paced by a 2-for-4 outing from freshman left fielder Bryce Kelley with both hits being doubles and adding a run scored. Sophomore third baseman Marty Bechina was 2-for-3 with an RBI and a double of his own. Senior second baseman Dan Durkin was 1-for-4 with an RBI double and a run scored, while junior designated hitter Chad Roskelly was also 1-for-4 with a double, as MSU had five doubles on the day.
Iowa got on the board early, plating three runs in the top of the first, stringing together a pair of hits and taking advantage of an MSU error.
The visitors added a run in the top of the third, opening with a walk and a double, chasing MSU starter junior Andrew Gonzalez and bringing in senior reliever Walter Borkovich. After a strikeout, Iowa plated a run on a groundout before another groundout to end the inning, but not before the Hawkeyes had a 4-0 lead.
Michigan State put a run on the board in the bottom of the fourth, as sophomore shortstop Royce Ando laced a two-out single to left. Fellow sophomore Bechina then belted an RBI double to the wall in left center to drive in Ando to pull the Spartans within 4-1.
MSU plated a pair of runs in the bottom of the sixth, as Roskelly led off with a double to right, then Durkin followed with a double to right of his own. After a single by senior catcher Matt Byars moved Durkin to third, a groundout double play drove in Durkin to cut the deficit to 4-3.
Iowa matched MSU with the scoring on a groundout double play in the top of the seventh to open a 5-3 lead.
The Spartans got back within a run down in the bottom of the seventh as Kelley led off with a double down the right field line and moved up to third on a wild pitch. Sophomore right fielder Dan Chmielewski followed with a sacrifice fly to center to drive in Kelley and pull within 5-4.
The Hawkeyes broke the game open with a five-run top of the ninth, stringing together four hits and taking advantage of a pair of Spartan errors.
MSU tried to spark a rally in the bottom of the ninth, with Kelley roping a double to right center, but the rally fizzled to end the game.
After no midweek games this past week due to finals, Michigan State has two midweek games this week, highlighted by playing at Comerica Park, home of the Detroit Tigers, on Tuesday, May 9, facing in-state foe Western Michigan in a 6:35 p.m. start time. MSU returns home to host another in-state opponent in Eastern Michigan on Wednesday, May 10 at McLane Stadium at Kobs Field. The Spartans resume B1G action by playing at Nebraska on Friday-Sunday, May 12-14 in their final league road series.
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