Leathernecks fall prey to Redbirds

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Jasmyne Taylor/ Courier Staff

Steve McShane winds up his swing.

David Koier, Courier Staff

Macomb, Ill. — The Western Illinois Leathernecks baseball team lost on Tuesday to the Illinois State Redbirds, 8-4. Sophomore pitcher Matt Walker scored the win today for the Redbirds while redshirt-freshman Alex Dorethy was the losing pitcher.

The Purple and Gold are now only 3-15 on the season, scoring their last win against the Saints of Maryville University last week. This win brings Illinois State’s record to 8-11.

The bats didn’t seem to be hot for the Leathernecks as the Purple and Gold were only able to put up 8 hits to Illinois State’s 10. The Redbirds seemed unsuccessful with runners on base as they left 9 runners on base during the matchup.

Leading the Leathernecks offensively were sophomore right fielder Drue Galassi and junior first baseman Bailey Montgomery. Galassi came into Tuesday’s game with a .167 batting average but ended up going two for four with an RBI bringing his average up to a .192. Montgomery went into the game with a .333 team leading batting average. He went one for three with an RBI and a sacrifice bunt. Montgomery currently still has a .333 batting average.

The first inning was pretty silent from both sides as the teams accumulated for only two hits. The second inning was quite uneventful as well as both teams went three up three down keeping the game tied scoreless.

It wasn’t until the third inning when business finally picked up. The Redbirds started off the innings with a pair of singles and a walk to load the bases. Another single by sophomore Jordan Libman scored the first run of the game. A sacrifice fly later and the Redbirds jumped to a 2-0 lead. Senior Noah Sadler scored an RBI as he reached first on a fielder’s choice. A pop fly to right field sent the inning to the Leathernecks with the score 3-0.

Two early outs made it seem like the Leathernecks weren’t going to be able to score. Freshman designated hitter Caleb Jacobs brought the Leathernecks hopes up with a two out single to right field.

Junior outfielder Steve McShane put the Purple and Gold on the board with a triple that scored Jacobs shortening the Redbirds lead to 3-1. A single by Galassi later and the Leathernecks were only down 3-2.

After a pitching change for the Leathernecks, Dorethy came in and threw out six straight batters in two scoreless inning against the Redbirds. After two singles and an error early in the bottom of the fourth, the Leathernecks were back in the game tying it up at 3-3. Montgomery came up to bat with a runner on third and hit his crucial sacrifice bunt giving the Leathernecks the lead for the first time during the game. Unfortunately for the Leathernecks, this would be the last run scored in the game.

A pair of runs in the fifth and three in the sixth gave the Redbirds the lead and they did not look back. The bats fell silent for both teams late in the game and the final score after nine innings was 8-4.

The Leathernecks face the Tigers of Missouri University Wednesday at 3 p.m. here at Alfred D. Boyer Stadium.

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