Broncos Fall in Offensive Battle With Michigan State
KALAMAZOO, Mich.- Western Michigan and Michigan State combined for 30 hits and 22 runs, but the Spartans would prevail, 15-7, Tuesday.
John Martinez doubled twice and drove in four runs for Michigan State, leading the Spartans with a 4-for-4 effort. Jared Hook cemented the victory with a three-run homer to right field in the top of the ninth. Three other players had multi-hit games for MSU.
Western Michigan right-hander Monty Porter (1-2) took the loss out of the bullpen, allowing four runs, four hits and walking three over two and two-thirds. Bronco starter Mike Moyer went one and one-third of an inning before handing the ball over to Porter. A total of six Bronco pitchers saw the mound.
Michigan State starter Mike Theodore lasted just two frames and LHP Trey Popp (3-1) earned the win in two innings of relief. Bryce Jenney threw the final five innings for his first save of the season.
Michigan State opened a 4-0 lead with three runs in the first and another in the top of the second, only to have WMU pull even with four runs in the bottom of the third.
Scanlon ripped a single through the right side with runners on the corners, scoring Booker and advancing Zach Thoma to third. Ryan McMillin walked to load the bases and with one out, Kujawa sent a poke into shallow center for a base hit. In the next at bat, Sohn drove the first pitch he saw to left field for a two-run single. The Spartans turned a 6-4-3 double play to get out of the inning.
Michigan State put two more runs on the board in the fourth, and WMU scored a run in the bottom of the inning to set the count at 6-5. Booker dropped a bunt for a base hit, Thoma singled to right center and Scanlon slapped an RBI single to left field. MSU again ended the inning with a twin killing, 5-4-3.
The Spartans began to create distance in the fifth when Blaise Salter put a two-run double off the wall in left. MSU added another run to go up 9-5.
WMU responded with two runs in the bottom of the fifth, cutting the deficit to two. Patrick Duncan led off with a bullet down the right field line for a double and scored on a two-bagger to center field by Kujawa. Sohn singled to right and stole second. The throw from behind the plate skipped past the shortstop, allowing Kujawa to scoot home from third.
Western Michigan's offense hit a road block after the fifth and Michigan State went on to tally a run in the sixth and seventh and four more in the ninth. The Broncos fell to 20-25 on the year, while MSU improved to 30-16.
WMU travels to Chicago State tomorrow for a 4 p.m. ET contest and returns to Kalamazoo to host Northern Illinois in the final home Mid-American Conference series over the weekend, May 11-13.