Over 27 innings of baseball this weekend Purdue was pretty bad for about 25 of them. Rutgers pretty much dominated the weekend series, but one of those two good innings was the ninth inning on Saturday, and that was enough for Purdue to steal a game.
Rutgers 7, Purdue 5
Scarlet Knights didn’t have a huge day, but they picked away here and there to take a 7-1 lead after 6 innings. Purdue only managed a fourth inning run when Tyler Powers scored on a Miles Simington single. Trent Johnson took the loss, giving up six earned runs in five innings of work on six hits. Ryan Lasko took Johnson deep twice, once in the first for a solo shot and once in the third for a two-run shot.
Purdue did make a late rally, however. Cam Thompson provided a spark with a ninth inning two out grand slam, but Purdue was not able to get anything else going in the inning.
Purdue 7, Rutgers 4
Once again, Purdue did little to nothing at the plat in the first eight innings. Calvin Schapira for Purdue and Ben Wereski for Rutgers had a scoreless pitcher’s duel through six, but Rutgers got all four of their runs in the seventh. Chris Brito provided the big blow in the inning with a three-run double.
That lead would hold until the ninth, when Purdue’s offense finally got going. Ryan Howe reached on a one out error and Jake Parr followed with a single. Kyle LaPlante then loaded the bases with a single and Purdue got its first run on an Evan Albrecht single after that. A wild pitch pushed across a second run, then Ben Nisle re-loaded the bases by getting hit by a pitch. Powers would single home the third run and Simington tied it on a sacrifice fly.
The rally wasn’t done though, as Mason Gavre finished the game with one swing on a 3-run walk-off homer. It was Purdue’s first walk-off home run win since 2006.
Rally Recap: 7⃣ in the 9⃣th— Purdue Baseball (@PurdueBaseball) March 27, 2021
Howe Safe on E4
⚒️ Parr PH Single
⚾️ LaPlante Single
Albrecht RBI Single
Parr Scores on Wild Pitch
Powers RBI Single
Simington Sac Fly (Tie Game)
Gavre Walk-off Homer#BoilerUp x #WalkoffWinner pic.twitter.com/okp3f6WYqr
Jackson Smeltz earned his second win of the season with 2 2⁄3 innings of shutout ball. Gavre’s home run was the first of his Purdue career.
Rutgers 15, Purdue 4
The less said about this one, the better. Rutgers jumped all over Purdue from the get go, scoring four in the first, three in the second, and seven in the fourth to open up a 14-2 lead early on. Purdue ended up using 11 pitchers on the day, and none got more than four outs. It was pretty much a worst case scenario.
As seems to be the case, Purdue struggled in all phases of the game for most of the weekend. Schapira’s quality start on Saturday was promising, but Jett Jackson and Trent Johnson were knocked around in their starts. Scoring one run in 16 of the first 18 inning did not help, either.
Purdue is now 3-11 on the season and is only a half game out of last place ahead of Minnesota (3-12). Iowa (7-8) comes to town next for a three-game set next week as Purdue plays at Alexander Field on consecutive weekends.