The Illinois State baseball team grabbed sole possession of first place in the Missouri Valley Conference with a 7-4 win over Southern Illinois on Friday at Carbondale.

Nick Zouras and Jack Butler homered for ISU and winning pitcher Brent Headrick (4-3) pitched two-hit ball over seven innings.

Gunner Peterson added three hits and an RBI while Joe Aeilts contributed two hits, including his 11th double of the year and an RBI. Derek Parola also had two hits for the Redbirds (23-15, 6-1).

SIU (17-17, 1-6) scored three runs off Headrick in the fifth inning to tie the game at 3-3. ISU regained the lead with a run in the sixth before adding three insurance runs in the seventh.

Headrick struck out eight in seven innings before Colton Johnson came on in relief in the eighth and gave up SIU's final run.

Central Catholic product Jacob Gilmore earned his eighth save after striking out the side in a scoreless ninth.

The Redbirds and Salukis continue their three-game series with a 2 p.m. game on Saturday.

Holland wins javelin: On day one of the Pacesetter Sports Invitational track meet at Terre Haute, Ind., ISU's Tessa Holland won the javelin with a throw of 123-2. Teammate Erica Bourke took second in the hammer throw (186-2). After three events, the Redbirds lead the six-team field with 35 points.

For the men, ISU leads with 39 points. The Redbirds were led by runners-up Skyler Arthur in the 5,000 (15:18.03) and Sam Weisz in the hammer throw (177-9).

Softball team drops two: Drake (32-13, 17-1) topped the visiting ISU softball team (12-29, 6-7) by scores of 8-0 and 3-2.

The nightcap featured a home run by ISU's Allison Spence. Teammate Shannon Felde drove in the other run while Morgan Day (6-15) took the loss after allowing three runs, only one of which was earned.

In the five-inning first game, Riley Hale had ISU's lone hit against Nicole Newman, who fanned 10 and walked one. Ali Domkuski (4-5) took the loss after allowing nine hits and six earned runs.


Softball team sweeps: The No. 6 nationally ranked IWU softball team (23-6, 11-1) topped host North Park (12-18, 1-9) twice by scores of 8-0 to give third-year coach Tiffany Prager her 100th victory. She improved to 100-35-1.

Ally Wiegand (13-2) fanned 15 and walked none while tossing a two-hitter in game one. Colleen Palczynski led the offense with three hits including a solo homer and a double to drive in two runs. Brittany Murphy also had three hits and two RBIs while Hayley Earl had two hits and two RBIs.

In the six-inning second game, Earl had two hits including a double to drive in two runs. Palczynski added two hits and two RBIs as Brea Walker (10-3) tossed a one-hitter, striking out seven and walking one.

North Park fell to 12-18 and 1-9.

Men's golf teams 1st, 2nd: After the first day of the two-day Take Back the Night Challenge at Decatur, IWU's A and B golf teams are first and second in the 20-team field after shooting 300 and 306, respectively.

Skylar Le Vine of the IWU B team leads by two strokes with an even-par 72. Ben Johnson, Drew Persching and Rob Wuethrich of the IWU A team are part of a four-way tie for second at 74.

Women golfers 4th: The IWU women's golf team shot an opening round 336, good for fourth in the 16-team Wisconsin-Whitewater Spring Fling where Carleton heads into Saturday's play leading at 312.

IWU's Jordan Koehler is in a four-way tie for second at 78, two strokes behind Carleton's Ziyi Wang. IWU's B team is eighth at 365.

Baseball team swept: Millikin (14-15, 9-8) handed host IWU (14-14, 8-9) a pair of baseball losses, 4-3 and 3-2.

In the opener, Nick Figus and John Bosco each had two hits and one RBI for IWU. Reliever Jacob Houghton (0-1) took the loss after allowing two runs, neither of which was earned, in 4⅔ innings of work.

In the nightcap, Garrett Shea had two hits and one RBI for the Titans as Blue Ridge graduate Ben Williamson (4-2) earned the win for Millikin, fanning eight and walking one while scattering three hits over seven innings. IWU reliever Evan Hill (0-2) took the loss after allowing two runs, neither of which was earned, in two innings.



Reporter for Lee Enterprises Central Illinois.

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