KENT, Ohio – In an important matchup against the Mid-American Conference favorite, the Miami University baseball team went toe-to-toe with Kent State for the first seven innings. However, KSU scored twice in the eighth to down MU 4-2 on Friday night.
The loss drops the RedHawks to 13-19 and 4-6 in MAC play. The Golden Flashes are now 21-11 with an 8-2 MAC record.
An RBI double by Jeff Revesz and an RBI triple out of Alex Miklos put the Golden Flashes ahead 2-0 in the bottom of the third. The RedHawks had a tough time with MAC ERA leader Eric Lauer in the first time through the lineup, posting only one hit over the first four innings.
Miami put together a brief scoring threat in the fifth when Max Andresen was hit by a pitch to start the frame. Chad Sedio singled with one out to put the tying run on base, but Lauer induced a double play ball to keep the Golden Flashes on top.
The RedHawks finally got to Lauer in the seventh. Dan Walsh started the inning with a single, with Andresen singling to put the tying run on two batters later. With two away, Sedio worked a walk to load the bases. Adam Yacek’s ground ball was misplayed at third base, bringing Walsh home and putting the Red and White on the board. With the inning still going, Steve Sada came through with a clutch RBI single to tie the game at 2-2.
Seth Varner followed that rally up with by pitching a 1-2-3 seventh to get the bats right back to the plate. Walsh walked with one out in the eighth and a groundout moved him into scoring position, but KSU reliever John Fasola induced a fly out to end the threat.
A leadoff single by Jon Wilson ended Varner’s night to start the eighth, with Jacob Banks coming out of the pen in relief. However, Miklos’ bunt was thrown away and scored Wilson from first while advancing Miklos to third to give the Golden Flashes the lead again. Just Wagler followed up that with an RBI single to make it a 4-2 ballgame entering the ninth. Eric Dorsch closed out the game by retiring the RedHawks in order in the top of the ninth.
Varner (4-2) suffered a hard-luck loss, his first since opening day on Feb. 15. The senior allowed three runs (two earned) on eight hits in seven innings of work. He struck out eight Kent State batters and did not issue a single walk. Walsh (2-for-3 with a walk) reached base three times and recorded two of the RedHawks’ five hits.
“It is rough for Seth to be hung with a loss tonight,” Miami head coach Danny Hayden said. “He pitched really well and gave us a chance in a close game that we could have won, but unfortunately we fell short tonight.”
Miami and Kent State resume their weekend series on Saturday, with Nathan Williams slated to start for the Red and White. First pitch is at 6 p.m.