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A grand slam by Joe Butler during a six-run fourth inning highlighted an offensive outburst for the Illinois State baseball team Saturday in an 18-7 nonconference win over Morehead State at Morehead, Ky.

Butler finished with six RBIs while John Rave, Owen Miller, Collin Braithwaite and Ryan Hutchinson each had three of the Redbirds' 19 hits. Braithwaite also drove in three runs while Joe Aeilts and Jordan Libman added two RBIs apiece.

Colton Johnson (2-0) got the win in relief for ISU (5-3), allowing one unearned run on two hits with three strikeouts in 2⅔ innings. Starter Brent Headrick fanned four and allowed four runs, one earned, in 4⅓ innings.

Morehead State (5-5) went through six pitchers in the loss. The teams conclude the weekend series Sunday.

Softball splits: After ISU played its fourth straight extra-inning game in a loss to No. 23 McNeese State, Sarah Finck took a shutout into the seventh inning against Purdue as the Redbirds salvaged a split in the LSU Tiger Classic at Baton Rouge, La.

Finck (6-4) scattered eight hits in seven innings, getting out of a bases loaded jam in the final frame as the Redbirds (7-12) completed a 5-1 win over the Boilermakers (2-14). Lauren Prader led the offense with two hits and two RBIs, drawing a bases loaded walk in the third and adding an RBI-single in ISU's three-run seventh.

In the early game, Alexandria Saldivar hit a two-run homer off Morgan Day (1-5) during a three-run 10th that lifted McNeese (16-4) to a 7-5 victory. Shannon Felde's sacrifice fly in the bottom half cut the deficit to two and ISU brought the winning run to the plate before Caroline Settle (5-2) induced a game-ending pop out.

Allison Spence's two-run double in the sixth pulled the Redbirds into a 4-4 tie. Felde started in the pitcher's circle and allowed one earned run while striking out five in five innings. Day notched three strikeouts in her five innings of relief.

The Redbirds face Purdue again Sunday morning to close out the tourney.


Baseball edges Grinnell: John Bosco drew a bases loaded walk in the 10th inning to give IWU's baseball team a 6-5 win over Grinnell at St. Louis.

Jake Stewart started the winning rally with an infield single and the next two Titans were hit by pitches. Braden Miller was credited with the win as IWU (3-0) totaled 10 hits.

Softball falls: Sam Berghoff belted a solo home run in the fourth and finished with three RBIs but the IWU softball team fell 21-4 to Berry at Tucson, Ariz.

Three Berry pitchers limited IWU to six hits, while Brea Walker (1-1) took the loss in the circle for the Titans. Berry (14-2) pounded out 20 hits off three IWU hurlers.

IWU managed to bounce back (2-2) with a 4-1 victory over the University of Rochester. No other information was available at press time.


Baseball sweeps: Shakur Jackson homered and drove in four runs in the first game, then Ethan Copeland had five hits and scored three times in the nightcap as Heartland moved to 4-0 by sweeping Ellsworth, 5-2 and 15-7.

Antonio Saldana fanned six in three innings to get the win in the opener, with Clifton Slagel working four scorless frames for the save. Arthur Sellers added four hits and four RBIs in the second game.

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