MT. PLEASANT, Mich. – Michigan State baseball earned a pair of wins on Tuesday afternoon at Central Michigan at Theunissen Stadium. In the resumed Clash at Comerica, the Spartans defeated Central Michigan 5-4 and took down the Chippewas 10-0 in the second game of the day.
“It was a big day because we feel that we didn’t play well last weekend,” head coach Jake Boss said. “It was good to come out and swing the bat well and pitch well. Hopefully we can gain some momentum and get ready for a big three-game series at Penn State.”
Chase Rihtarchik started the second game for MSU and earned his team-best sixth win of the season with a one-hit effort in seven strong innings. Rihtarchik walked two and had four strikeouts.
The Spartans won their 30th and 31st games of the season, extending the school record of four consecutive 30-win seasons. Head coach Jake Boss ranks second in school history with four 30-win seasons behind only Tom Smith with five.
“It’s a good program win and it is a testament to our seniors,” Boss said. “They are now the winningest senior class here and the leadership that they have shown. For those guys to be a part of more wins than anyone that has worn a jersey here is pretty special.”
In the first game, CMU evened the game at one in the bottom of the fifth where the game was picked up. With runners on first and second, Huntey singled through the left side for an RBI that scored Santos.
In the sixth inning, Ryan Krill hit an RBI-single through the right side that scored Jimmy Pickens. With two outs, Pickens singled and Joel Fisher followed that up with a single of his own.
MSU took a 5-1 lead after plating three runs in the seventh inning. With the bases loaded, Pickens doubled to left field, sending home Anthony Cheky, Ryan Richardson and PJ Nowak. All three runs were unearned after Nowak reached on a CMU error to lead off the inning.
Central cut the deficit to 5-3 with a two-run home run to right field by Cody Leichman in the seventh. The Chippewas managed another run in the eighth on a RBI-single from Leichman.
Mike Theodore earned the win and threw seven innings in the game dated back to April 17. He allowed six hits, three runs and had four strikeouts.
Trey Popp relieved Theodore and earned his second save of the season.
The Spartans scored five runs in the third inning of the shutout in game two. Justin Hovis hit an RBI-double to left field and Cam Gibson followed that with a RBI-single to right. Salter hit a three-run home run to break the game open for MSU.
Gibson finished the day 4-for-6 and Hovis went 3-for-5. Six different Spartans notched an RBI on 16 hits for the Spartans.
The staff held CMU to just two hits in the contest, one off Rihtarchik and one off Anthony Misiewicz in relief.
MSU added one in the fifth and three in the sixth inning after Pickens crushed a two-run homer to right center.
The Spartans added one more run in the ninth and Joe Zwierzynski relieved Misiewicz to seal the Spartans second shutout of the season.
Michigan State will finish the regular season on the road at Penn State in the final Big Ten series set to start Thursday at 6:05 p.m.