Offense Owns Day One Of MAC Baseball Tournament

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The 2013 Mid-American Conference baseball tournament started Wednesday in Avon, Ohio. No. 4 seed Ball State, No. 6 seed Bowling Green, No. 7 seed Toledo and No. 1 seed Kent State all won their first games of the double-elimination tournament.

Game No. 1: No. 4 Ball State 13 – No. 5 Miami (OH) 7

Ball State outslugged the RedHawks, scoring 13 runs on 17 hits Wednesday. Ball State first baseman Cody Campbell and catcher Sam Tidback each had three RBIs on the game. The Cardinals got a strong performance on the mound out of starting pitcher Scott Baker (12-1) as well. Baker pitched eight innings while giving up four earned runs and striking out four. The Cardinals moved on to game No. 7 and will take on Kent State Thursday evening. Miami will face off against Central Michigan in game No. 6 Thursday afternoon, the loser will be eliminated.

Game No. 2: No. 6 Bowling Green 6 – No. 3 Northern Illinois 4

The Falcons were able to pull off the upset of sorts, scoring two runs in the top of the 11th to take the game. Northern Illinois had the lead early Wednesday up 4-0 through four innings. But the Falcons managed to tie it up in the eighth. Eli Anderson pitched well for the Huskies earning a no decision, going eight innings while giving up four earned runs and striking out six. Five Falcons batters drove in a run in the game and reliever Nick Bruns got the win, pitching two and one third innings of scoreless relief. The Falcons moved on to game No. 8 and will face Toledo Thursday evening. The Huskies and the Buffalo Bulls will face off in game No. 5 Thursday and the loser will be eliminated.

Game No. 3: No. 7 Toledo 12 – No. 2 Buffalo 10

The Rockets managed to score seven runs in the final three innings Wednesday to upset the second-seeded Bulls. The teams combined for 17 and 16 hits respectively. Nine different Rockets players tallied a hit in the win. Toledo third baseman John Martillotta drove in three RBIs as well. Buffalo’s relievers Ben Hartz and River McWilliams struggled to stop the Toledo offense, giving up a combined seven earned runs between the two of them. McWilliams (3-5) picked up the loss. Toledo reliever Adam Tyson (3-2) got the win, pitching one and two thirds innings of scoreless baseball. Toledo advanced to game No. 8 and will face off against Bowling Green Thursday night. Buffalo will take on the Huskies in game No. 5 Thursday, with the loser being eliminated from the tournament.

Game No. 4: No. 1 Kent State 15 – No. 8 Central Michigan 8

Central Michigan starter Jordan Foley (6-6) lasted just one and one third innings as Kent State jumped out to an early 9-2 lead through the first two innings, creating a hole that the Chippewas couldn’t climb out of. Kent State third baseman Justin Wagler drove in five RBIs on three hits including a two-run home run in the bottom of the seventh. Taylor Williams (10-1) got the start for the Golden Flashes Wednesday evening and benefited from their offensive output while picking up the win. Through six innings Williams allowed three earned runs on seven hits while striking out 10 Chippewas batters. Kent State advanced to game No. 7 where it will face Ball State Thursday evening. Central Michigan will face Miami Thursday afternoon in game No. 6. The loser of that game will be eliminated.