Bash-full Huskies dwarf ‘Cats

By Todd McMahon

When two teams are struggling, the best cure is to score as many runs as possible.

In a game that lasted nearly four hours, NIU’s baseball team used timely hits and plenty of Northwestern miscues to bash the Wildcats 19-11 at the Kane County Events Center last night.

The Huskies (13-26) pounded out 18 hits and took advantage of 10 Northwestern errors to produce their highest offensive output in two years.

Brent Horlock (2-1) held Northwestern in check for five innings to earn the victory. Out in the blustery conditions for five innings, he allowed only two runs—on a fourth-inning home run by Dave McNally—four hits, one walk and struck out two Wildcat batters.

“Brent has been giving us consistent starts all year,” NIU coach Joe “Spanky” McFarland said. “He does well when the weather is cold.”

“It’s my kind of weather,” said Horlock, who had family members on hand from nearby St. Charles. “I’ve been used to the cold weather.”

But even with Horlock’s outstanding pitching, the Huskies needed all the runs they could muster.

NIU jumped out to a 5-0 lead after the first three innings, scoring once in the first and twice in both the second and third frames.

Thanks to Northwestern’s first error of the night, NIU scored two runs after two were out in the second, highlighted by Tom O’Neill’s (3-for-6, 2 RBI) run-scoring double down the third-base line.

The Wildcats got on the scoreboard with McNally’s two-run homer in their half of the fourth. The Huskies increased the lead back to five (7-2) in the fifth with two more runs—the first coming on Chip Paulsen’s (2-for-2) drive to the left-field wall.

The last four innings, however, saw 21 total runners cross the plate as both teams went deep into their bullpens. The Huskies used five pitchers on the night, while Northwestern, which suffered its ninth-straight defeat, used four hurlers.

The Huskies added another two-spot in the top half of the sixth inning, on run-scoring singles by Doug Feldmann and Chris Burt.

The Wildcats clawed back as close as they would all night, 9-7, with five runs in their half of the sixth—thanks to three walks and a hit batsman.

But NIU put the game out of reach with one run in the seventh and six more in the eighth for a 16-7 lead. The Wildcats committed three errors in those two innings and hit two


“We were more aggressive tonight,” McFarland said. “Our bats came out tonight. Both teams threw a lot of young guys out there, so this was kind of expected.”