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Recap: Miami baseball loses to Butler University in the first of two midweek matchups

With the loss, the RedHawks move to 7-11 on the season
With the loss, the RedHawks move to 7-11 on the season

The Miami University RedHawks baseball team returned to action against the Butler University Bulldogs on Tuesday in the first of two scheduled midweek matchups. 

The 7-9 Bulldogs were coming off a series loss against Bradley University, in which the final game saw them take a 21-11 beating in eight innings. Needless to say, the likelihood was high they would be firing on all cylinders.

For Miami starter Nick DeMonica, a left-handed junior out of Cortland, Ohio, his job was to pitch well early and minimize any potential damage.

That objective was not obtained.

The Bulldogs plated seven runs in the top of the first inning, four of which came off a grand slam from the bat of sophomore middle-infielder Ian Choi. They also had three hit-by-pitches in the inning.

DeMonica’s day was over in the blink of an eye.

The RedHawks would score two runs in the bottom of the first, and redshirt junior Patrick Mastrian IV kept the Bulldogs scoreless in the top of the second. A three-run bottom of the second for Miami closed the gap even more.

Junior outfielder Zach MacDonald crushed a hanging curveball to right-center field, his fifth bomb of the season, to add those three runs to the board.

The third inning saw both teams score two. Then, Butler scored in two innings straight while the home team was held off the scoresheet, putting the deficit at 12-7 in favor of the visitors.

Redshirt junior third baseman Ryland Zaborowski showcased his power, smashing his fourth home run of the year, bringing in MacDonald with him to score and cutting the Bulldogs' lead to 12-9. 

The other redshirt junior on the left side of the infield, Dillon Baker, reached first base via a walk and advanced twice due to two wild pitches.

Switch-hitting junior outfielder Anthony Zarlingo hit an RBI single, bringing the shortstop home and making the score 12-10. But that was all the offense could muster, as the seventh, eighth and ninth innings were quiet for the home team.

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The Bulldogs would add their final run of the day in the top of the seventh inning.

Once again, it was MacDonald who was the best player for the RedHawks, which should not be surprising at this point for the RedHawks’ faithful. He went 2-for-4 with three runs scored and three RBIs in the losing effort. 

Sophomore second baseman Tyler Gordon also had a good day at the plate, finishing with two hits in three at-bats, a run and an RBI. 

With the loss, the RedHawks move to 7-11 on the season, and the Bulldogs get one step closer to the .500 mark, sitting at 8-9.

The RedHawks are set to face the 12-9 (3-3) University of Cincinnati Bearcats on Wednesday at 4 p.m. at McKie Field at Hayden Park. This will be followed by another conference series against the Northern Illinois University Huskies this weekend.