April 8, 2007
By Jeff Honza
CARBONDALE, Ill. - Cody Adams gave up only two hits and struck out a career-high 10 in a complete game shutout, as Southern Illinois University (22-9) beat Valparaiso (8-16), 7-0, earlier today at Abe Martin Field.
Adams became the first SIU pitcher to strike out 10 or more in a game since Tyler Norrick recorded 12 at Bradley (April 8) on this exact same date in 2005.
The Dawgs also blanked an opponent for the first time since downing Missouri by the same score on May 17, 2005.
"Cody really dominated today," said Saluki head coach Dan Callahan. "He was very aggressive and had excellent control of the strikezone."
Adams hooked up in a fine pitcher's duel with Valpo left-hander Nick Mazzone early on.
Adams, pitching for the first time since his only loss of the season at Evansville (March 31), never gave the Crusaders a chance.
He recorded at least one strikeout in every inning and just three runners reached base against him. None of those Valpo baserunners made it past second base.
Meanwhile, Mazzone was just as impressive, but he started showing signs of fatigue in the fifth.
On the next play, Roberts grounded out to second and Lairson scored. Two more runs came home with the help of a Hills singe and error by Valpo left fielder Jason Brunelli to ice the 7-0 win.
Adams, now 8-1 on the year, retired 13 of the last 14 hitters he faced, including 10 in a row between the fourth and eighth innings.
"I felt a lot more confident out there today," said Adams. "I changed up the grips on a couple of my pitches and that really helped me keep their hitters off balance."
Mazzone fell to 1-4 after giving up six hits and three runs in 5.2 innings. He also struck out three.
Hills and Lairson topped the Salukis with two hits each.
Hills, who extended his hitting streak to 15 games, went 2-for-4 with a run scored and one RBI. Lairson finished at 2-for-3 with a double, run scored and one RBI.
Michael Arensdorff and Brunelli accounted for Valpo's quiet two hits.
Defensively, SIU went error free for the fifth time this season.
SIU returns to action at Southeast Missouri State Tuesday. First pitch is set for 3 p.m., CST.