Andy Sneddon, CMUChippewas.com
MOUNT PLEASANT, Mich. - A pair of career-bests at the plate and an outstanding one-two combo from the Camerons on the mound lifted the Central Michigan baseball team to a 13-2 nonconference victory over Michigan State on Tuesday at Keilitz Field at Theunissen Stadium.
Zach Heeke led off the bottom of the first inning with his first career home run and finished with four hits, and freshman Jordan Patty added three hits to lead the Chippewas. The four hits for Heeke and the three for Patty were career highs.
Cameron Brown (3-1) started for CMU and earned the win, going 4 1/3 innings. He allowed two runs on six hits and struck out two. Redshirt freshman Cameron Miller surrendered just one hit over 4 2/3 innings for his first career save. He struck out five. Neither pitcher walked a batter.
HOW IT HAPPENED
Heeke's homer to right field and Evan Kratt's RBI single in the first inning tied the game 2-2. The Chippewas got an RBI single from Zavier Warren and Daniel Robinson hit a sacrifice fly in the second to put the Chippewas in front for good, 4-2.
CMU (23-28-1) padded its lead with two runs in the sixth and then scored five in the seventh and two more in the eighth.
AT THE PLATE
Heeke, batting leadoff for the second-consecutive game, finished with a career-high four RBI. He has seven hits in 10 at-bats batting at the top of the lineup.
The Chippewas collected 16 hits, marking the fourth time in their last five games that they have reached double digits in hits. It was their third-highest hit total of the season and the most they have collected since they pounded out 22 against Oakland on April 11, a stretch of 20 games.
Jason Sullivan and Evan Kratt added two hits apiece for the Chippewas.
Bryce Kelley and Zach Iverson had two hits apiece for the Spartans (18-29).
ON THE MOUND
Michigan State scored both of its runs in the first inning, getting three hits off of Brown and taking advantage of a Chippewa error.
Brown and Miller combined to hold the Spartans scoreless on just three hits over the final eight frames.
Sam Benschoter (0-2) started for MSU and took the loss. He allowed four runs on six hits over five innings. He struck out two and walked two.
SWEEPING THE SPARTANS
The win gave CMU a season series sweep of MSU for the first time since 2014. The Chippewas won the first meeting, 3-1, on March 21 in East Lansing.
The Chippewas close the regular season this weekend with a three-game Mid-American Conference series at home against Ohio.
The series begins on Thursday (3:05 p.m.). The Chippewas are 13-11 in league play and in fourth place. Ohio is 21-29 overall, 9-15 MAC. The top six teams in the standings earn a berth in the MAC Tournament next week in Avon, Ohio.