Seven-run fifth inning powers MSU past CMU baseball

The Central Michigan baseball team surrendered seven runs in the third inning Wednesday in a 13-10 loss against Michigan State at Cooley Stadium in Lansing.

Junior left-hander Matt Faiman took the loss, his first of the season, giving up four runs on five hits in two innings pitched. Freshmen Dietrich Enns and Brock Guetzke combined to allow nine runs, four earned, in five innings of relief work.

With CMU holding on to a 3-2 lead in the third, Michigan State got back-to-back hits to start the inning. Walks, a wild pitch and fielding error by the Chippewas allowed the inning to spiral out of control as MSU connected on three extra-base hits to take a 9-2 lead.

“We had a bang-bang situation at second base that didn’t go our way,” said coach Steve Jaksa. “Then we made errors, they had a perfect push-bunt and then the guy blooped one down the left field line. It ended up being a big inning for them, and then we’re playing catch up the rest of the day.”

CMU (11-10) attempted to minimize the damage, scoring two runs in the fifth inning and another in the sixth, but the Spartans responded by scoring both times. MSU also added two runs in the seventh.

The Chippewas also made a late-game rally, scoring twice in the eighth inning and two more in the ninth, but the early deficit was too much to overcome.

“It was a windy day and they were getting ahead of counts and getting pitches they could drive, putting balls in play and making us work defensively,” said sophomore Sam Russell, who finished the game 3-for-5 with three RBIs.

MSU jumped out to a first-inning lead after a walk and wild pitch by Faiman allowed a two-out double by second baseman Ryan Jones to score two runs.

The Chippewas tied the game 2-2 on a home run by Russell and took its only lead of game on a double and sacrifice fly by seniors Billy Anderson and Dale Cornstubble.

Sophomore Nate Theunissen went 3-for-5 with two RBIs and a run scored.

Second baseman Ryan Jones went 4-for-5 with three RBIs for MSU (17-4).

CMU returns to Theunissen Stadium at 3:05 p.m. Friday to start a three-game weekend series against MAC opponent Ohio.