KENT, Ohio – The Miami University baseball team rallied back from a slow start to win Sunday’s series finale at Kent State, 6-4.
Sunday’s win snapped MU’s three-game losing streak and improved it to 14-20 on the year and 5-7 in the Mid-American Conference.
The Golden Flashes (22-12, 9-3 MAC) jumped ahead thanks to sacrifice flies in the first (Alex Miklos) and third (Jon Wilson) to grab an early 2-0 lead. The bottom of Miami’s lineup responded in kind during the top of the fourth to tie it up. Matt Honchel pulled an RBI single to right center and Ryan Elble evened the score with a bunt single that plated Chad Sedio to tie it up at 2-2.
Miami erupted for three runs in the sixth to take its first lead of the weekend. Elble singled and Jake Romano reached on a KSU error to start the frame, putting runners on the corners with nobody out. After Elble was cut down on a fielder’s choice, Romano came around to score on a wild pitch, which moved Dan Walsh to third base. Scott Slappey plated Walsh with a sacrifice fly to center. MU wasn’t done there, getting a two-out double from Gary Russo with Max Andresen’s RBI single scoring him to put the Red and White on top 5-2.
KSU began chipping away at the lead by scoring a run of its own in the bottom of the sixth. Wilson led off with a double and scored on Miklos’ RBI single to cut the deficit to 5-3. The Golden Flashes then drew closer in the eighth when Justin Wagler belted a solo homer with two down in the eighth to make it 5-4. A two-out double by Zarley Zalewski and a walk by Cody Koch put the winning run on base, ending Ryan Powers’ afternoon.
Charles Zubrod came in from the Miami bullpen and promptly induced an inning ended fly out to keep the Red and White on top. With KSU inching closer, MU added an insurance run in the top of the ninth thanks to a sacrifice fly from Elble to extend its lead to 6-4.
“Ryan did a great job today holding down a very good lineup,” Miami head coach Danny Hayden said. “We threatened many different times and we could’ve scratched across a few more runs, but we kept playing and creating more chances. It would’ve been nice to get one more from this weekend, but it’s good to walk out with a win over a solid team like Kent State."
Zubrod came back out for the bottom of the ninth and worked around a two-out single to pick up his second save of the year.
Powers (3-3) picked up his second-straight victory after tossing 7.2 innings and allowing four runs on 10 hits. He struck out seven batters and walked one. The RedHawks got multi-hit performances from Andresen (3-for-5), Slappey (2-for-4) and Walsh (2-for-4).
Miami returns to the diamond on Wednesday when it plays a midweek contest at Eastern Kentucky.