’Birds win 2 of 3 against Sycamores

Archive Photo: Dan Savas threw his second-consecutive complete game against the Indiana State Sycamores Friday, helping the Redbirds take the weekend series.

Archive Photo: Dan Savas threw his second-consecutive complete game against the Indiana State Sycamores Friday, helping the Redbirds take the weekend series.


Illinois State’s baseball team faced off against Indiana State over the weekend and took the series, defeating the Sycamores in two of the three games.

Game One: ISU 5, Indiana State 2

Dan Savas was ticketed with the win for the Redbirds as he threw his second-consecutive complete game Friday night.

This is Savas’ 17th consecutive decision and 20th career win as a Redbird.

Indiana State was the first to score in the second inning. Brian Romero took a one-out walk and scored on a RBI-single from Jeff Zahn before Savas retired 10 consecutive Sycamores on a streak that continued into the fifth inning.

Sean Beesley opened the third inning with a single hit before the Redbird center fielder stole second and third base and scored on a RBI hit from Paul DeJong to tie the game.

Beesley walked with the bases loaded in the eighth inning and Dwyer hit a sacrifice-fly to bring ISU’s lead up to 4-1.

In the ninth inning, Mason Snyder had a pinch-hit single to plate Hollenbeck and extend ISU’s lead, 5-1.

In the bottom of the ninth, the Sycamores managed one more run but were not able to catch up to the Redbirds, who took the 5-2 victory.

Game Two: ISU 2, Indiana State 9

Indiana State came back from Friday’s loss with a vengeance as they went on to score nine consecutive runs and defeat ISU in the second game of the series at Bob Warn Field.

Dylan Craig had his first loss of the season and allowed six earned runs over seven hits in five innings of play.

Indiana State’s Brad Lombard allowed only one run on five hits while ISU’s pitching gave up five walks.

Beesley singled to open the game and stole second base to score on Hollenbeck’s RBI single. Hollenbeck contributed a sacrifice-fly in the ninth inning to finish ISU’s scoring campaign.

In the meantime, Indiana State accumulated nine runs, taking the permanent lead in the third inning.

Illinois State loaded the bases in the sixth and seventh innings but was unable to score, handing the Sycamores the 9-2 win.

Game Three: ISU 11 Indiana State 1

Jeremy Rhoades’ first-career complete game and career-high 12 strikeouts helped ISU take the final game and series against Indiana State Sunday.

“After the game yesterday I challenged our team to really be able to do a good job behind [Rhoades] because he’s been pitching like this for a while now and we just haven’t been giving him the run support, so for us to score 11 runs and him have another typical Jeremy Rhoades outing I thought was a great complete effort,” head coach Mark Kingston said.

During the seven-inning run-rule game, Rhoades allowed only one unearned run on three hits.

ISU scored seven runs in the third inning, putting the Redbirds at an early advantage. Dennis Colon matched his career-high RBI with four and DeJong added three more RBI.

Rhoades managed five 1-2-3 innings and recorded two strikeouts in six of his seven innings on the mound.

Hollenbeck further extended his on-base streak to 25 games with a RBI double and Mason Snyder drew a bases-loaded walk in the fourth.

Indiana scored its only unearned run off of Rhoades in the bottom of the seventh inning, but Rhoades answered by striking out Connor McClain to end the game with a 11-1 Redbirds victory.

Illinois State will open the home set of its 2014 schedule at Duffy Bass Field on Tuesday against Eastern Illinois. First pitch is set for 3 p.m.

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