March 11, 2007
By Jeff Honza
CARBONDALE, Ill. - Southern Illinois University (11-5) capitalized on seven errors in a 8-6 win over Youngstown State (0-8) earlier today at Abe Martin Field. SIU handed the Penguins their eighth-straight loss.
It's tough to win a ballgame when you have more errors than runs, and YSU found that out today.
"Overall, I was happy to get two wins this weekend, but our pitching and defense need to get better," said Saluki head coach Dan Callahan. "I felt a lot better after today than I did at this time last weekend."
SIU, which snapped a two-game losing streak with its second series sweep of the season, took a 3-0 lead with the help of three YSU errors in the first.
Hills, after going to second on a passed ball, came around to score on a single by Dean Cademartori.
Cademartori stole second, went to third on a throwing error by Penguin catcher Dustin Wachter and touched home on Chris Crank's two-out single.
After a fourth YSU error led to another Saluki run in the second, SIU pulled ahead, 6-1, with a pair of tallies in the fourth.
Michael Finigan doubled down the left field line out of the nine-hole to start the fourth. He scored on an ensuing double by Aaron Roberts. Roberts, who went to third on Elmendorf's bunt single, scored when Kelly grounded out to short.
SIU scored again thanks to yet another YSU error in the sixth, before the Penguins scored three times to pull to within a run in the seventh.
John Koenlein drew a leadoff walk and Sean Lucas singled against Saluki reliever Kyle Catto. An Erich Diedrich double and third SIU error enabled both runners to score on the following play. Tom Clayton's sacrifice fly knocked in Diedrich to cut the lead to 7-6.
Ian Reinhart, however, would end all hopes of YSU's comeback when he retired nine-straight to earn his third save.
"I thought Ian pitched really well," said Callahan. "Our bullpen has been shaky lately, but he gave us a chance to win in the end."
Reinhart calmly recorded three-straight outs when he took over for Catto in the seventh.
He then posted back-to-back strikeouts to start the eighth and forced three of his next four hitters to fly out after that.
"I felt like I had good movement on my pitches and did a good job of keeping them off-balance," said Reinhart.
Cody Adams struck out seven, allowed six hits and gave up three runs in five innings before giving way to Catto in the sixth. Adams remained unbeaten at 5-0 on the year.
Adam Kalafos (0-3) suffered his third loss of the season after giving up six hits and six runs in four innings. He also walked five.
Offensively, SIU out-hit the Penguins, 11-8, with freshman Aaron Roberts going 3-for-3 with two doubles, two runs scored and two RBI to lead the way.
Roberts replaced starting center fielder Kevin Koski, who left the game due to a sore hamstring in the third.
Elmendorf, Kelly and Cademartori followed with two hits apiece, as the Salukis have put up double-digit hits in six of their last seven games.
SIU hits the road to face Middle Tennessee State during its spring break. The Dawgs and Blue Raiders open a two-game series Tuesday at 3 p.m., CST.