MUNCIE, Ind. - The Ball State baseball team opened up Mid-American Conference play with a win over Bowling Green, 9-5, Fri., Mar. 21 at Ball Diamond. Ball State was led offensively by Jarrett Rindfleish and Caleb Stayton who scored two runs apiece.
With the win Ball State improves to 14-8 on the year and 1-0 in MAC action, while Bowling Green falls to 6-13 and 0-1 in league play.
T.J. Weir picked up the win for the Cardinals to improve to 2-1 on the year, while Zach Plesac picked up his third save on the season. Weir faced 27 batters with six strikeouts, nine hits and three earned runs.
Ball State got the bats going in the bottom of the second inning when Rindfleish singled down the leftfield line. Stayton would be walked to bring up Sean Kennedy. After Kennedy was hit by pitch, the bases were loaded as Estep stepped to the plate. Estep would hit a sacrifice fly to right field that would score Rindfleish. Kennedy and Estep were both able to come home after Raleigh’s double to center field.
The Falcons would answer in the top of the third when Brian Bien got on base with a bunt. Jeremy Shay singled to center field and Bien advanced to third base. T.J. Losby would bring home Bien for Bowling Green’s first run with a single to right center. Shay would score after a single to center field by Jake Thomas.
The bottom of the third inning started with a single to third base by Sean Godfrey. Godfrey would steal second base as Stayton was at bat. Stayton hit a single to center field that was bobbled resulting in Godfrey to score and Stayton to advance to second base.
Ball State would have its hottest offensive performance in the bottom of the fifth inning scoring five runs on four hits. Raleigh got on base on walks and advanced to second after a single from Alex Call. Ryan Spaulding reached on an error that was able to score Raleigh and advance Call to third base. Call and Spaulding were able to score off a single from Stayton to left center. Rindfleish got on base on a walk and advanced to second after Stayton’s single and was brought home off a Kennedy single to center field. After Estep’s single to right field, Stayton was able to round the base and score Ball State’s ninth and final run of the game.
Bowling Green earned a run at the top of the sixth inning. Logan Walker double to center field and scored after Brandon Howard hit a single to center field. The Falcons would chip in two more runs at the top of the seventh, but it was not enough to overcome the Cardinals’ lead.
The Falcons stranded 13 runners on base for the game while the Cardinals left seven on bases. Bowling Green finished with 15 hits and two errors while Ball State earned 12 hits and committed no errors.
The two squads will wrap up the season on Sat., Mar. 22 with a doubleheader. The first pitch is slated for noon with the second game to begin thirty minutes after the conclusion of the first. There will not be a game on Sunday.