Purdue (3-4) traveled to Corpus Christi, Texas to play in the Kleberg Bank College Classic. The Classic consisted of four teams from across the country.
Purdue, Missouri, Sam Houston State, and the host Texas A&M Corpus Christi. The Tournament was held at Whataburger Field, which is the Corpus Christi Hooks, Double A team for the Houston Astros.
Texas A&M Corpus Christi 6
We opened the weekend off by playing a night game against the host team on Friday. We fell to them 6-2 in what seemed like a close game but doesn’t appear so on paper. Mike Kornacker got his first start as a Boilermaker, he was only scheduled to pitch two innings which is all he ended up doing. Regular Friday night starter, Gavin Downs, came in as relief in the 3rd.
Unfortunately our pitching could not hold off the Islander’s offense.
Offensively, Kyle Johnson drove in two RBIs along with picking up two hits. Freshman designated hitter, Evan Kennedy also picked up two hits as he got his first start in the line up for the season.
Runs Hits Errors
Purdue 2 7 0
Islanders 6 10 2
Sam Houston State University 3
Saturday was a thriller! The boilers took on SHSU in a doubleheader. The first game went into a 12 inning pitchers dual. We were the home team in the first and away in the second.
The team had very timely hitting, two of the three runs were driven in off of pitch hitters, Jack Picchiotti and Daniel Sander.
They crawled their way back into the game after finding them in a 2-0 deficient.
In the top half of the 12th inning, Sam Houston State was able to scratch a run across. With the game on the line, the Bearkats brought in their flamethrower of a reliever who registered 95 on the radar gun with one toss. Since becoming a reliever in the 2014 season, he had not given up a run until…in the bottom of the 12th, Penn transfer Michael Vilardo stepped into the batters box with the bases loaded. SHSU did something a little different defensively, they brought their left fielder in and played him right behind second base. All the infielders were playing in, and the outfielders were playing shallow, everyone knowing that the game winning hit could come at this at bat. Vilardo drove a ball to right center allowing the Alec Olund to score from third and for the Boilers to have their first walk off victory of 2015.
Pitching showed up, Brett Hann pitched 5.1 innings allowing 2 runs on 5 hits with 4 strikeouts. Tim McElory came in a threw 3 shutout innings and only allowed 1 hit with 3 strikeouts in the 10 batters he faced. Matt Gibbs came in and pitched 2/3rd’s of an inning and picked up his first win of the season.
Runs Hits Errors
SHSU 3 13 0
Purdue 4 9 0
Sam Houston State University 7
Purdue Scored 7 unanswered runs to overcome a 7-2 deficient in the nightcap of the doubleheader. This is one of the greatest comebacks in recent years of Purdue baseball, the other one happening in 2012 against UCLA, when the Boilers scored 10 runs in the top of the 9th.
The team scored 3 runs in two separate frames to get back into the game, 3 in the 5th and then 3 more in the top of the 9th to tie the game and take the lead. This was a very thrilling game to watch and be apart of.
We had a lot of bullpen relief game as we had 5 different pitchers throw. Matt Gibbs came in as relief for the second time of the day and gave the Boilers a solid 2.1 innings and picked up his second win of the season, surprisingly his second win of the day as well.
Offensively, we had 3 Boilermakers have multi-hit game. Brandon Krieg had 3 hits, Kyle Wood and Jack Picchiotti both recorded 2 hits. Kyle Johnson took a curve ball deep and put it in a palm tree past the left field wall.
The Bearkats brought in their flamethrower of a closer again for the second game against us and we were able to pile up some more hits and runs on him.
Runs Hits Errors
Purdue 9 12 4
SHSU 7 8 3
The final day of the classic was upon us and the Boilers found themselves in the drivers seat. With a win and a Corpus Christi loss, the Boilers could clinch the title.
Once again we found ourselves in a pitchers dual. Starting pitcher Matt Frawley pitched 3 innings and gave up the lone run in the top of the 3rd. McElory, Downs, and Shane Braynt came in and pitched a solid 6 shut out innings and worked out of many jams.
The offense struggled against Mizzu’s pitching as they could only record 1 hit for the day. However we were able to get many baserunners on. We had our chances to get runners in but our situational hitting was not good at all.
Runs Hits Errors
Missouri 1 8 0
Purdue 0 1 0
Purdue was honored with 4 Boilers making the All-Classic Team:
The Boilers are currently in route to Phoenix, AZ to play in the ASU Phoenix Muni Classic, hosted by Arizona State. The other two teams competing will be Gonzaga and California State University Bakersfield. ASU just welcomed a new coach this past season, much "loved" Tracy Smith which took Indiana to Omaha last season.
This team has more fight and more will power to win then the past two seasons. Look for this team to be competing for a Big Ten championship against Illinois and Maryland when Big Ten play starts.
Also, thanks to Southwest WIFI, this might be Hammer & Rails first ever post from 40,00 feet up. Boiler Up!