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MAC Bats: April 19

Eight teams saw action yesterday as NIU and Ohio creeped up the MAC standings while Toledo won its fourth straight game.

Mitch Longo rounds first (Kaleb Carter)

Northern Illinois 17, Kent State 11

In what turned out to be a high scoring game, the Huskies (12-25, 8-5 MAC) used three multi-run home runs to get past the Flashes (16-19, 5-6 MAC) in the opening game of the series. In the second inning, Jake Dunham and Kam Smith connected on three-run and two-run homers respectively as NIU used a six run inning to take an 8-7 lead. KSU knotted things up in the following inning as Justin Kirby scored off of a double play, but it was all Northern Illinois from that point on as a two-run shot by Brendan Joyce in the bottom of the inning helped power the team to an 11-8 lead that they wouldn’t relinquish. Kirby ended up having a career day as he went 4-5 with three home runs and five RBIs while NIU’s Smith had five RBIs of his own.

Ohio 6, Eastern Michigan 1

The Bobcats (11-24, 6-7 MAC) had their way in this game as they registered 12 hits to the Eagles’ (8-30-1, 3-10 MAC) seven and had two of their runs walked in. The first inning set the tone for Ohio as they recorded four straight hits to start the game, and Cole Revels and Nathan Mallott both walked with two outs to score the last two runs of the inning. OU’s pitching was also on point as Eddie Kutt went eight innings with six strikeouts to two walks while Brett Manis closed the door with three straight strikeouts.

Toledo 4, Central Michigan 3

The Rockets (14-21, 3-8 MAC) capitalized on a couple of mistakes made by the Chippewas (26-11, 8-5 MAC) to win their fourth consecutive game. After a three-run third inning for CMU thanks to RBIs from Zach Warren and Griffin Lockwood-Powell, Toledo’s pitching dominated as Doug Smith and Nate Haugh combined for six innings of shutout baseball to close the game. Offensively, UT had some clutch at-bats as Ryan Thompson had a RBI-single in the in the fourth inning to get on the board and recorded a sacrifice fly in the eighth inning for the go-ahead run, while a throwing error in the sixth inning and a passed ball in the eighth resulted in run scored for Brad Boss.

Western Michigan 5, Bowling Green 1

The Falcons (12-21, 5-8 MAC) opened up the game with a Neil Lambert RBI-single in the first inning, but the Broncos (12-22, 5-6 MAC) used eight innings of shutout baseball to earn the first win of this series. The difference in the game from a pitching standpoint was the amount of free bases issued: WMU didn’t beat itself with two walks and a wild pitch while BG didn’t help its case with eight walks (one that was intentional) and a wild pitch. Blake Dunn was the offensive catalyst for Western Michigan as he went 2-4 with a pair of RBIs, a walk, and a run scored.