Castellanos' Complete Game Shuts Down Purdue, 6-2
March 29, 2014
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Sophomore Ryan Castellanos turned in his first career complete game on Saturday, as Illinois (13-11, 1-1 Big Ten) earned its first conference win of the year over Purdue (5-17, 1-1 Big Ten) at Illinois Field. After falling behind 2-1, the Illini battled back with two runs in the fifth and added three in the seventh to capture the 6-2 victory. Castellanos improved to 3-1 and did not allow a walk for the fourth consecutive start.
"Ryan threw well today," associate head coach Eric Snider said. "He kept us in the ballgame and then we opened it up, so he was able to relax and pitch. It was good to see him get the complete game. We also finally got some of the situational hits we needed."
Purdue got on the board first with a sacrifice fly in the second, and Illinois responded in the third with an RBI groundout. Freshman Ryne Roper and sophomore Adam Walton, who each went 2-for-4 at the bottom of the lineup, started off the stanza with singles. Junior Will Krug sacrificed both runners into scoring position followed by junior Michael Hurwitz's groundout to second that brought home Ryne Roper.
The Boilermakers retook the lead in the next half inning, scoring on a wild pitch after a double and a single put runners on the corners to begin the fourth. Castellanos limited the damage and kept the Illini within one.
Ryne Roper singled again to lead off the fifth, as Illinois jumped back in front with two runs in the inning. After Walton reached on an error at shortstop, Krug legged out a fielder's choice to break up a double play and put runners on the corners. Hurwitz then doubled down the left field line, plating two runs thanks to Purdue's left fielder misplaying the ball, which allowed Krug to score from first.
After back-to-back singles by Purdue in the top of the fifth, Castellanos retired the next nine Boilermakers in a row. He cruised through three-up, three-down innings in the sixth and seventh and retired the first two batters in the eighth before a single up the middle ended his streak.
The Illini added three insurance runs in the seventh to give Castellanos a four-run cushion. Walton beat out a bunt and scored on Krug's RBI triple to right. After a walk to Hurwitz, Krug scored on a wild pitch. Redshirt-junior Reid Roper scored Hurwitz with a sacrifice fly later in the inning following a pair of Purdue pitching changes.
After throwing 89 pitches through eight innings, Castellanos finished the contest himself with seven pitches in the ninth for a 96-pitch complete game. He scattered nine hits and allowed two runs to go along with one strikeout and no walks.
Up Next: Illinois and Purdue will meet for the rubber game in the series finale on Sunday at 1 p.m. at Illinois Field.