Cougars Walk-Off Baseball ‘Birds in First Midweek Battle
Written by Tim Zalabak on February 21, 2023
EDWARDSVILLE, Ill – After the Illinois State baseball team took two games out of three down in Clarksville, TN against Austin Peay last week, the Birds traveled back north to Edwardsville for a one-game matchup.
The Cougars jumped out with an early two-run lead in the bottom of the first inning. The deficit was cut in half thanks to Adrian Flores and Auggie Rasmussen scoring off singles from both Dylan Swarmer and Luke Cheng in the top of the third and sixth.
With the ball for the Redbirds was Thomas Harper, a freshman RHP out of Wisconsin, who went 4 innings, giving up two earned runs and striking out five.
The Redbirds gained their first lead of the day in the top of the sixth from an RBI ground out off the bat of Shay Kubo, scoring the third baseman, Greg Nichols.
The Cougars would not go away easy, regaining the lead in the bottom of the seventh from a passed ball that scored Drew Mize, the SIUE second baseman.
As the Redbirds entered their last bats chasing one run, Daniel Pacella, the ISU left fielder answered the call, going deep to center field to tie the scoring at five.
It came to the bottom of the 10th inning as the Cougars took advantage of a lead-off walk from Brennan Orf, then a perfectly placed bunt set up Ole Arntson, the SIUE first baseman for a walk-off single up the middle.
The Redbirds now sit at 2-2 and look to their next set of games, taking on Arkansas State, the University of Arkansas, and Central Arkansas.