Just 18 games into the season Purdue has already matched last season’s win total. They return to Indiana this week, where they will play their first game inside state lines at Ball State midweek before opening Big Ten play at Iowa. They enter as hot as they have been in years, too. After sweeping Santa Clara in four games over the weekend Purdue has now won five in a row, its longest winning streak since closing the 2015 season with five straight wins to finish that year 20-34
Purdue 12, Santa Clara 4
Mike Madej started the series on a tear by going 4 for 5 at the plate with 2 RBI and 4 runs scored. The Boilers got 2 in the first, 1 in the third, 3 in the fifth, and four in the seventh as the top of the lineup was deadly. Jacson McGowan had 4 RBI and Nick Dalesandro had three as they kept driving in Madej and leadoff hitter Harry Shipley.
Jack Dellinger was hit for two runs and only lasted 3 1/3 in the start, but Ross Learnard earned his first win of his Purdue career on the mound.
Purdue 3, Santa Clara 0
After Cal State Northridge knocked Tanner Andrews around last week he recovered nicely against the Broncos. He went 7 2/3 and struck out 10 against just three hits in another shutout victory. He now stands a chance at earning his third Big Ten Pitcher of the Week award in the first five weeks of the season. He is now 4-1 as Purdue’s Friday starter with a 4.22 ERA. Twice he has won via shutout, too. RBI doubles by Shipley and Dalesandro in the third were enough for Purdue. The Boilers added an insurance run in the ninth and Dalton Parker earned his third save of the season.
Purdue 8, Santa Clara 7
The first game of Saturday’s doubleheader was a back-and-forth affair, but three more RBI from McGowan and a ninth inning sacrifice fly from Skyler Hunter gave Purdue a comeback win. Purdue trailed 6-5 entering the 7th, but scored a run each in the 7th, 8th, and 9th while giving up only one in the 8th. Cameron Williams gave up that 8th inning run, but earned the win when Purdue got it back in the ninth. For the second straight game Parker closed the door, giving him 4 saves on the season.
Purdue 10, Santa Clara 5
Purdue completed the double-header and its first 4-game road sweep in 16 years with an impressive nightcap Saturday night. After getting it done all weekend at the plate McGowan came in from the bullpen and actually earned the win on the mound with two scoreless innings and five strikeouts. It was his first appearance on the mound since the opening weekend at Texas State and he made the most of it. Mike Kornacker gave up only one earned run as the starter in four innings. At the plate the big hit came in the fourth inning when Hunter delivered a 3-run double with the bases loaded.
Purdue now sits at 10-8 on the season, which is marked improvement over the past few seasons. Its first midweek game is Wednesday afternoon at Ball State (11-9), who has beaten a solid Maryland team and has played No. 1 Louisville and No. 2 Oregon State. They lost four games at the Beavers last weekend, but took three of four this weekend against Dayton.