MSU Out-Slugs UM Saturday In 12-8 Series-Clinching Win - Michigan State University Athletics (2024)

EAST LANSING, Mich. -- A slug-fest broke out at McLane Stadium at Kobs Field on a sunny Saturday afternoon, and Michigan State emerged victorious with a 12-8 Victory for MSU over Michigan, as the Spartans clinched their first series win over Michigan since 2016.

Saturday was Spartan Baseball Alumni Day, and MSU honored its 1954 College World Series team by doing just like the Green & White did back then, securing the season series vs. Michigan.

All 1,954 fans in attendance at Saturday's win were treated to a high-scoring contest after Friday night's 3-2, 10-inning walk-off win, to clinch the series for the Spartans.

"It feels good, you try to win every game, try to win every series, they are all equally important, but to win on Friday and Saturday, at home, in front of a great crowd here, against your rival, it really doesn't get a whole lot better than that," MSU head coach Jake Boss Jr. said.

The Spartans will be going for the sweep of the Wolverines on Sunday in the series finale.

"I know they are going to be ready to play tomorrow, they're trying to salvage one in the series, while we are trying to get back to making up for that sweep on the road at Purdue, so it's a big game for both teams."

MSU's last season series win over UM came in 2016, bouncing back from dropping the opener in Ann Arbor on April 29, 2016, by winning the next, on April 30, 2016 in East Lansing and then back in Ann Arbor on May 1.

The Spartans have now beaten the Wolverines in the last four meetings dating back to last season to register their first four-game win streak over UM since 2010-11. MSU has won five of the last seven vs. UM overall.

Michigan State moves to 21-22 overall and 9-8 in the Big Ten, its first time over .500 in conference action this season. Michigan rode into town on a five-game winning streak but MSU dealt UM not only its first consecutive B1G losses of the season, but its first back-to-back losses since March 26 and 29, which was started by the Spartans' 16-6 walloping of the Wolverines on March 26 and followed with an 11-9 loss to Maryland on March 29.

MSU bashed three homers on Saturday, including two in the bottom of the eighth, as the Spartans pulled away from an 8-8 tie. UM hit four homers, the last to knot it up at 8-all.

"It was a good day. I thought our guys really did a nice job of staying the course and every time they scored, we answered, which I think is a sign of a good character win. We didn't get down, we didn't get defeated, it was just 'alright, we've got to answer back now," Boss said. "We've lost a few games late, when we gave up leads and didn't answer, but today, we gave up the lead, but got it back there in the eighth with some big swings."

Senior outfielder Jack Frank hit the go-ahead homer with an opposite-field solo shot to left field with one out in the eighth. It was Frank's team-leading eighth HR of the season.

"He's got some backside power, he's been back-spinning balls to the opposite field for five years now, he's got some juice the other way," Boss said. "I don't know if the wind helped it or not, but I know he definitely got the barrel to it for sure."

After senior infielder Dillon Kark singled and junior outfielder Nick Williams, who was Friday night's walk-off hero, knocked a double to move Kark to third, senior outfielder Greg Ziegler hit a towering three-run shot that just cleared the left-field wall but gave the Spartans a 12-8 advantage.

"As of right now, as of right now, it's one of the best moments of the season for me, getting the series win and it's against UM, and we've get one more tomorrow, but I foresee a lot of better things to come as a team and for myself," Ziegler said.

Ziegler now has four home runs on the season and is hitting .383 to top the team in only playing in 26 games having missing the first portion of the season with an injury.

"Greg's been really good, he has been one of our hotter guys," Boss said. "He missed the first couple weeks of the season with an injury, had surgery on his wrist, so he missed the first month or so of the season, it was slow coming back, getting used to seeing live pitching again, but now he is in the middle of the order and one of our better guys right now for sure."

Senior reliever Aaron Mishoulam came on in the top of the ninth for his second relief outing in as many games vs. UM, and just like his 2.0 IP Friday night, retired the Wolverines in order without a hit, ringing up a strikeout and back-to-back flyouts to Ziegler in center to end the game and spark the Victory for MSU celebrations.

The Spartans' 1-through-5 hitters in their line-up combined for 12 of MSU's 13 hits, 11 of the 12 runs and seven of the nine RBI.

Frank finished 4-for-4 with three runs scored and an RBI, while Ziegler finished 3-for-5 with five RBI and two runs scored. Kark and N.Williams scored three runs apiece, with Kark going 2-for-4, while N.Williams was 1-for-2 and drew three walks. Freshman infielder Ryan McKay was 2-for-5 with an RBI.

Junior infielder Sam Busch bashed a solo home run deep over the wall in right-center field in the second inning in going 1-for-4, while senior catcher Sam Thompson added an RBI on a sac fly in the third.

Spartan senior southpaw Nick Powers, a native of Flushing, Mich. and one of 22 Michiganders on the MSU roster, had a cheering section of nearly 100 people from Flushing in attendance, and went 5.0 solid IP, scattering six hits with four strikeouts.

Sophom*ore Nolan Higgins went 1.0 IP with one K, before turning it over to senior Harrison Cook, who went 2.0 IP with two Ks, and Mishoulam secured the Spartan successful outcome.

Just like Friday night, MSU got on the board in its first at bat, but unlike Friday night, UM did not score in the top of the stanza, and the Spartans had an early 2-0 lead. Frank and Kark drew back-to-back walks, chasing UM opening pitcher Sachem Ramos. Dylan Vigue took over and induced N.Williams to fly out to center, but moved Frank and Kark up a base. Ziegler followed by lacing a single to left center to drive in Frank and Kark, but was thrown out trying to stretch it to a double.

The Wolverines scored in the top of the second on an RBI single, but the tie didn't last long, as Busch homered to right center to regain the two-run lead for the Green and White at 3-1.

UM countered with a home run of its own, a two-run homer to center by Stephen Hrustich, to level it at 3-all.

N.Williams led off the bottom of the third with a walk, preceding singles by Ziegler and McKay to fill the bases full of Spartans. Two batters later, Thompson flew out to center for the RBI sac fly to plate N.Williams and give the home team a 4-3 advantage.

The Spartans added to their lead with a three-run fourth, on only one hit, a one-out double by Frank, then taking advantage of three wild pitches and two UM errors for a 7-3 lead.

The Wolverines clawed back with a solo home run in the top of the fifth by Collin Priest and a would-be lead-taking rally in the sixth. After a one-out double by Mack Timbrook, Kyle Dernedde had a check-swinging bunt, that Higgins fielded but sailed an errant throw down the right field line, and Timbrook came around to score and Dernedde went to second. However, Dernedde was called out by the umpires for runner interference and Timbrook was sent back to second. Michigan wouldn't be kept off the scoreboard however, as Will Rogers pinch hit and knocked a pinch-hit two-run homer down the right field line and just inside the foul pole to pull the Wolverines within 7-6.

Rogers then took over on the mound for the bottom of the sixth, and Frank rudely welcomed him with a single through the left side and Kark followed with single to right center. N.Williams drew another walk to again fill the bases full of Green & White. Ziegler drove in Frank with an RBI fielder's choice for an 8-6 Spartan lead.

After a scoreless seventh stanza, the only inning without any scoring by either team, the Wolverines tied it up at 8s on a two-run HR by Jonathan Kim.

The tie didn't last long Frank smacked his oppo-field homer with one out, setting up Kark, N.Williams and Ziegler's big plays for the lead.

Mishoulam took over on the mound and though not a save situation, the tension was more than palpable feeling of a save situation. He range up a strikeout, then got consecutive flyouts to Ziegler in center, with the final out igniting the jubilant Spartan celebration.

Michigan State and Michigan wrap up their three-game weekend series and four-game season series on Sunday at 2:05 p.m.

Michigan State then hosts Bowling Green on Tuesday, May 7 at 6:05 p.m. in another non-conference match-up.

Fans can follow the action with "Tickets," "Watch Live," "Listen Live" and "Live Stats" links at

Michigan State's schedule is subject to change, stay tuned to and @MSUBaseball on Twitter for schedule updates.

Individual game tickets are also on sale through the Spartan Ticket Office.

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MSU Out-Slugs UM Saturday In 12-8 Series-Clinching Win - Michigan State University Athletics (2024)


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