RENSSELAER, Ind. – The Purdue University Northwest baseball team fell victim to a walk-off home run, as the Pride fell 3-2 in nonleague play at St. Joseph’s College (Ind.) Tuesday.
Purdue Northwest (14-13) scored the game’s opening run in the first inning and held that lead until the seventh, when the Pumas (22-11) plated two runs on a Chase Fieldhouse two-run homer.
PNW didn’t give in though, answering in the eighth when Avondre Harris (Mishawaka, Ind./Mishawaka) singled to left field with two runners on to score Brock Crews (Manteno, Ill./Manteno) from third. Crews walked, advanced to second when Mike Mikulich (Hebron, Ind./Hebron) was hit by a pitch and then third on a SJC wild pitch to help PNW tie the game at 2-all.
But the Pumas – who retired PNW 1-2-3 in the top of the ninth – walked off with the win when Riley Benner belted a one-out, walk-off home run over the left field fence.
Harris (single) scored the game’s opening run for Pride in the first, as senior Tyler Crussen (Wheeler, Ind./Wheeler) connected on an RBI double to left.
Harris finished 2-for-4 at the plate with an RBI and scored a run to lead PNW, who had just four hits. Crussen and Mikulich accounted for the other hits for PNW.
PNW senior Brody Kutch (La Porte, Ind./La Porte) took the loss on the mound. Starter Zac Hernandez (Hebron, Ind./Hebron) recorded a no-decision, allowing three hits, striking out four, walking one and did not give up an earned run.
PNW returns to action Wednesday when the Pride travel to Roosevelt (Ill.) for a Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference doubleheader in Chicago.