M-State Spartans took the lead late and defeated Erie CC 4-3 in the first game of a doubleheader on Sunday. Erie CC captured the lead in the first inning. Marlison Brunken singled on a 3-2 count in the first inning, scoring one run. M-State Spartans knotted the game up at three in the bottom of the third inning. An error scored three runs for the Spartans. Later the Spartans scored three runs in the third inning. M-State Spartans scored its runs on a groundout by Brandon Hill. The game was tied at three with M-State batting in the bottom of the fifth when Nate Morris induced Jakob Bradsteen to ground out allowing Cole Kugler to score. Hill earned the win tossing seven innings, giving up three runs, four hits, striking out seven, and walking one. Anthony Kanaval took the loss pitching one inning, allowing zero earned runs, zero hits, striking out one, and walking zero. Starting pitcher Nate Morris tossed five innings, surrendering four runs, three hits, and striking out four. Zach Thunselle, Alex Hexum, and Mike Boutain all had one hit to lead M-State Spartans.
M-State Spartans fell to Erie CC 10-9 on Sunday on the final play of the game. M-State collected eight hits in the high-scoring affair taking an early lead in the first inning. Then Erie scored five runs in the fifth inning to come charging back. Brandon Hill took the loss for M-State Spartans but not before turning in an amazing performance. After earning the win in the first game and catching 5 innings of the second game, Brandon Hill came back and pitched two and a third innings, allowing two runs, three hits, striking out three, and walking zero. After entering the game in the 6th inning Brandon Hill held Erie scoreless for two innings then in the top of 8th inning Hill came to the plate and hit a go ahead solo homerun to give the Spartans the lead. But in the bottom of the 8th Erie CC capitalized on some timely hitting scoring two runs to escape with the win. Jakob Bradsteen and Hill each collected multiple hits for the Spartans.
"Today was a big step for us as a team. I thought it was an excellent opportunity to show guys that if we can execute at the plate and in the field then we will always have a chance to win. I thought as a team that we were putting the ball in play consistently, bunting and running the bases very well today but the one person I think deserves the most credit today is Brandon Hill. He (Brandon Hill) was simply awesome today. Going out and throwing a complete game on 90 pitches against a team like that is a feat in its self but then to come back and help us out by catching 5 innings was big for us but no it didn't end there. He pitches 2 1/3 innings for us so we can keep on track with our pitching and throws well on top of that keeping us in the game but it still doesn't end there. He comes up in extras and hits a go ahead solo homerun. When I started coaching here I said to myself that I wanted a gritty, scrappy, hard-nosed team and I think we can get there if we keep playing like this" say Coach Hughes.
Next game is Monday @ 9:30am against Vermillion.