Baseball takes two of three from Miami

By Andrew Singer

Jeremy Gonzales pitched a three-hit complete game shutout in a 2-0 win over Miami (OH) on Sunday afternoon, as the NIU baseball team took two of three from the RedHawks over the weekend at Ralph McKinzie Field.

The right-hander didn’t allow a batter to reach base until the sixth inning when the RedHawks’ Jon Edgington lined a single up the middle with two outs. On the day, the senior struck out seven and didn’t issue a single walk.

Gonzales has now pitched 25.2 consecutive scoreless innings, dating back to the last inning and two thirds of a loss to Saint Louis on March 20. The right-hander then pitched seven scoreless innings against Bowling Green on March 27, before finishing off a sweep of Buffalo the following Sunday with eight scoreless. Over his last three starts, Gonzales has struck out 18 batters and walked just five.

NIU head coach Ed Mathey said he believes the run of success can be directly attributed to Gonzales’ command.

“At the start of the year, he was trying to come out and overpower everybody,” Mathey said. “He is just focusing on throwing strikes right now.”

The result, Mathey said, is a plethora of batters coming away from facing Gonzales shaking their heads thinking they should have gotten a hit. Gonzales, though, loves nothing more than watching a hitter’s frustration boil over.

“I come out looking to embarrass guys,” Gonzales said. “Right now I am coming in to my starts with a lot of confidence, and that’s all it comes down to.”

The Huskies (13-16 overall, 6-3 MAC) came in to Sunday with a lot of confidence after besting Miami 7-4 on Saturday afternoon. NIU used a five-run fourth inning to overcome an early 2-0 deficit. Starting pitcher Tom Barry went seven innings and gave up only one earned run in his third win of the year.

Closer Kyle Glancy had to come on in the eighth inning after Tony Manville allowed a run to score, drawing the RedHawks to within a run. Glancy got out of the inning on a fluke double-play ball that bounced off shortstop Alex Jones to second baseman Alex Klonowski who stepped on second base and threw to first baseman Joe Etcheverry.

“I think our hitters did a nice job coming off of [Friday’s] game,” Mathey said. “We got that lead and we kept it, although it got a little bit crazy there in the eighth inning…the runs we got in the bottom of the eighth turned out to be huge.”

Friday marked the only poor day for NIU, as Miami (16-16, 5-4) dominated at the plate in an 8-0 beat down. Zach Oates had an uncharacteristically poor start, giving up three runs in the first inning. NIU spoiled an opportunity to get back in the game when Tom Kotis struck out looking with the bases loaded to end the fourth inning.