Tuesday, April 29, 2014
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Stewart, Redbirds Outmatch Southern Illinois 3-2 In 12 Innings

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[April 29, 2014]  NORMAL Brock Stewart worked a career-high 3.2 relief innings to help Illinois State (27-12, 8-5 MVC) outpace Southern Illinois (21-21, 3-10 MVC) in 12 innings Friday night at Duffy Bass field. The victory secured Illinois State's fifth consecutive win in what marked the longest game of the season for the Redbirds.

Mike Hollenbeck's bases-loaded walk in the bottom of the 12th inning capped a walk-off Redbird victory and improved ISU to a season-best 15 games over .500. Stewart (2-1) worked the final 3.2 scoreless innings for his second victory of the season. Stewart, who started the game at third base and went 1-for-5 at the plate, retired 11-of-12 batters he faced, with two strikeouts and one walk. Saluki reliever Kyle Pauly (2-2) allowed just one hit until the 12th inning but suffered the defeat. He struck out five batters over 4.1 innings.

Dan Savas worked a no-decision for the Redbirds and pitched 8.1 innings with a season-best 11 strikeouts. He allowed two runs on six hits and walked four. SIU starter Sam Coonrod pitched seven innings of two-run ball for a no-decision.

Illinois State had scoring chances early but left six men on base through four innings in a 0-0 tie. Southern Illinois drew first blood after Matt Jones drove in Cody Daily in the fifth inning with a single. The Salukis had men on second and third base with only one out, but Savas struck out Will Farmer and Dyllin Mucha to end the inning. The Redbirds responded quickly with a two-run home run from Paul DeJong in the bottom of the frame. It marked DeJong's seventh home run of the season and his second in Valley games.

The Salukis evened the score in the sixth inning when Cody Daily's sacrifice fly scored Connor Kopach. The Salukis had the bases loaded with just one away but settled for one run in the inning. With two men on, Tyler Rolland's two-out single bounced off Daily's foot for the third out of the inning.

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SIU put men on the corners with two outs in the ninth inning, when Stewart replaced Savas. Stewart retired Matt Jones and Farmer to end the inning and preserve the tie.

Sean Beesley reached on a fielder's choice in the bottom of the 12th inning. Down 1-2 in the count, Dwyer lined a single to left field to advance Beesley to third base. DeJong was intentionally walked in front of Hollenbeck, who drew a 3-2 pitch in the dirt to end the game.

Game two of the series was slated for 2 p.m. Saturday at Duffy Bass Field. Illinois State would honor the 1969 and 1994 Redbird baseball teams in a pregame ceremony.

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Box score   (PDF)

Overall statistics   (PDF)

[Text from news release received from Illinois State University]

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