Here are some early scores and highlights to review.
(# 28) Michigan 12 Siena 3 (Game One)
(# 28) Michigan 19 Siena 6 (Game Two)
The Ryan LaMarre Experience continues. The sophomore centerfielder went 3 for 4 with four RBI in Game One. Oh, he also hit two more homers in the opener. Mike Dufek also left the yard once amongst his two hits. Dufek scored twice and drove in two. Freshman catcher Coley Crank went 3 for 3 with two RBI. Eric Katzman earned the win. The lefty struck out seven in 5.2 innings.
LaMarre only had one hit in the finale. Of course, it's another longball. And he's driven in four more runs. Dufek has homered again and has two hits, two runs and two RBI. Garrett Stephens also homered and driven in three. Crank had his second consecutive three for three game. The frosh also scored three times. Travis Smith surrender two earned runs over six innings on four hits and two walks. Smith K'd 8 en route to claiming the win.
Austin Peay 10 Iowa 4
Hawkeyes 3B Kevin Hoef had two hits, two RBI, scored a run and stole a base. Wes Freie and T.J. Cataldo also had two hits a piece.
Xavier 7 Michigan State 3 (Game One)
The Spartans five errors helped the X-men post six unearned runs. Brandon Eckerle had three hits and a stolen base for MSU. Eli Boike had two hits including his second homer of the year.
(# 25) Ohio State 11 Northeastern 8 (Game One)
(# 25) Ohio State 4 Maine 1, 6th inning (Game Two)
Michael Stephens had three hits and four RBI to pace Ohio State in the first game. Michael Arp had three hits and two RBI. Brad Hallberg also drove in a pair of Buckeye runs. Eric Best picked up his first win.
Arp and Zach Hurley have each collected a pair of hits in the nightcap versus the Black Bears. There will be an update on this game later.
(# 1) LSU 22 Illinois 10, 8th
A complete contrast to last night's dueling pitching gem. The story of this game for the Illini is Willie Argo. The freshmen is a perfect 3 for 3 and has jacked three homers and driven in five and scored four times. He's even walked once. That's an incredible performance. Brandon Wikoff has four hits in five at bats thus far. The result might not end up the same as Friday, as LSU has scored six in the frame and still have no outs, but Illinois has proven they can hang with the top-ranked Tigers.
Texas State 17 Purdue 4, 9th
It's just not getting any better for Purdue. All Big Ten 3B Dan Black had a three-hit game. Jonathan Lilly and John Cummins each had two hits. Purdue has committed four E's. This Boilermaker squad needs to change tracks quickly.
More commentary on these game later. At which point, the next wave of games should be underway. The most interesting, to me, are Western Michigan @ Minnesota and (# 20) East Carolina vs. Indiana. The Gophers are gaining momentum and I'm curious if WMU does anything to slow them down. IU is in desperate need of a win. A victory over a ranked opponent might help the Hoosiers regain some lost credibility.
10:3pm Final Update
(#1) LSU 22 Illinois 10
See previous update. Alas, nothing changed.
Maine 10 (# 25) Ohio State 7 (Game Two)
The Black Bears get a come-from-behind win.
Minnesota 7 Western Michigan 1
Tom Buske goes eight full innings giving up only one unearned run on three hits and a walk. Eric Decker and Derek McCallum each had a pair of hits for the Gophers.
(# 20) East Carolina 5 Indiana 3
Cody Webber had a three-hit game to lead IU. Alex Dickerson homered for the Hoosiers. Starter Eric Arnett went the distance.
Bethune-Cookman 11 Michigan State 9 (Game Two)
Chris Roberts and Eric Roof both had two hits and three RBI. Johnathan Roof had a three-hit game.
Texas State 17 Purdue 4
Nothing changed here, either.
Northwestern @ Kansas (ppd, lightning)
They'll try to resume tomorrow. The Jayhawks were up 2-1 in the third inning when the lightning arrived.
Penn State 10 Akron 4
Grant Youngblood homered and drove in three to lead PSU. Mike Deese and Jordan Steranka each had two RBI. T.J. Macy had another good outing. Macy worked five innings allowing only two hits and two walks while striking out nine.
A few thoughts before I head off to move the clocks ahead. Michigan's Ryan LaMarre is on fire. In the last two weekends, according to my limited math skills, LaMarre is 16 for 30 (.533) with six homers, nine runs scored, twenty-three RBI, two doubles, three walks and three steals. Right here, right now, LaMarre is one of the best players in the nation.
I sort of expected MSU to struggle, although they are getting better pitching, at times, than I thought they would. Indiana and Purdue, I have no explanation for. From my distant vantage point, the guess is pitching as betrayed them. Yet, neither side is swinging the bats as well as they are capable, either. (IU's Alex Dickerson is the most notable exception.)
We are wondering what happened to all that good pitching Ohio State displayed early? Minnesota is on a roll. If these young Gophers improve as the year progresses, watch out. Michigan did what good teams do -- crush lower opposition.
Illinois, in spite of today's pounding, is the proverbial talk of the town. Let's be honest, if I had told Illinois fans that their side was going to plate ten runs versus LSU today, a night after dropping the #1 team in the country, they would have been thrilled.
I know they lost, but the Illini hung with LSU for eight innings when the Tigers were swinging redhot bats. You have to figure LSU was pretty cranky after last evening, as well. Yet, the Blue and Orange didn't back down. It will look like a thumping, but Illinois inflicted some damage to that LSU staff.
That's it for tonight. Don't forget to move your clocks ahead. Yes, my snowbelt allies, spring is coming.