It was a positive weekend for Purdue baseball at Alexander Field. After dropping each of its last three weekend series the Boilers finally got back on the good side of the win column by taking two of three from Southeast Missouri State. That made for a very positive 4-1 week when combined with the midweek wins over Chicago State and Purdue-Fort Wayne.
Friday: Purdue 8, SE Missouri State 3
Trent Johnson had a solid outing, going 5 2/3 and giving up three runs on four hits to earn his third win of the season. Dalton Parker, matt Moore, and Austin Peterson then combined to give up only one hit in the final three and a third. Purdue started slow at the plate, trailing 1-0 into the fifth, but Skyler Hunter plated Milo Beam with a single. Bryce Bonner then had a big three-run home run to put Purdue in front 4-1. Bonner added his fourth RBI with a single in the seventh and Beam later had his first home run in the eighth. Beam has had a great week since taking over the leadoff spot and was 2 for 4 with two runs scored.
Saturday: SE Missouri State 3, Purdue 2
Andrew Bohm continues to have bad luck as Purdue’s Saturday starter. He is now 0-6 on the season giving up just three runs on three hits in 6 1/3 innings. It was a seventh inning home run by The Redhawks’ Andrew Keck that broke a 2-2 tie and gave the visitors the win. Beam drove in a run in the fifth with a single and Zac Fascia had an RBI single in the sixth, but that was all the offense could muster. Purdue had only six hits, but two came from Fascia and two from Justin Fugitt.
Sunday: Purdue 6, SE Missouri State 2
Tyler Powers and Cole McKenzie each had triples and James Kulak worked out of a fifth inning jam to earnt he first win of his career. Beam got Purdue on the board with an RBI squeeze bunt in the third and later scored on a single from Hunter. McKenzie also singled in Hunter in the inning to make it 3-0 Purdue. Patrick J. Smith and Kyle Wade got into trouble when Keck had a two-run single to make it 4-2 in the sixth, but Purdue got insurance runs in the sixth and seventh to put it away. Austin Peterson earned his first career save with 2 2/3 innings of one-hit ball to close it out.
Purdue has no midweek games this week due to Finals, but it hosts Michigan State for a huge Big Ten series next weekend. Purdue is at 17-26 overall and 6-8 in the Big Ten, sitting in 10th place a half game behind Rutgers and Ohio State for the final Big Ten Tournament slot. This is where the weather cancellation against Penn State (2-15) really hurts, as that was a home game and probably league win Purdue could really use right now.
The Boilers still have to play Michigan State (14-28, 3-11), Illinois (28-14, 8-7), and Ohio State (24-20, 7-8) They’ll probably have to win six of those nine to safely make the Big Ten Tournament field. Fortunately, six of them are at home against Michigan State and Ohio State.