Senior Riley Dent notched three hits and junior Troy Jones (Orland Park, Ill. / Carl Sandburg [Triton]) was involved in both runs as the Valparaiso University baseball team incurred a 6-2 setback in the middle game of this weekend’s season-opening series at Western Kentucky. Valpo starter Colin Fields (Libertyville, Ill. / Libertyville) turned in a solid showing, holding the Hilltoppers scoreless through four and permitting just two runs over five innings.
How It Happened
- Valpo struck first when Jonathan Temple (Turlock, Calif. / Turlock [Modesto JC]) dashed home on a first-inning wild pitch. The inning started with two outs and nobody on base, but Temple drew a walk and scooted to third on a single by Jones.
- Fields held the Hilltoppers off the board in each of the first four innings. They broke through with two runs in the fifth to seesaw ahead 2-1. Fields left after five innings of four-hit, two-run ball, striking out four and walking two.
- Western Kentucky added a four spot against the Valpo bullpen in the sixth, opening the lead to 6-1.
- Valpo posted its second run of the day in the eighth, taking advantage of a WKU error to push across an unearned tally. After legging out an infield single, Riley Dent (Long Beach, Calif. / Wilson) came around to score on a sacrifice fly by Jones.
- Montana Quigley (Lake Forest, Calif. / El Toro) was not charged with any runs over two innings out of the Valpo bullpen, permitting just one hit and one walk. Jim Jarecki (New Berlin, Wis. / Burlington) also pitched well, putting up a goose egg in the bottom of the eighth while yielding no hits and one walk.
Inside the Game
- Fields was hit with a tough-luck defeat in his first start of the year.
- Dent enjoyed his first multi-hit game of the young season after sharing the team lead with 15 a year ago. He had four three-hit outputs in 2019 and one in 2017, making this the sixth three-hit game of his career.
- Jones has driven in a run in each game so far this season and is the only Valpo player with two RBIs on the young year.
- Temple and Steven Fitzsimmons (Golden Valley, Minn. / Robbinsdale Cooper) drew two walks apiece, accounting for four of the team’s five bases on balls.
Valpo (0-2) will round out the three-game series at Western Kentucky (2-0) on Monday at 1 p.m. at Nick Denes Field. Links to live audio and stats are available on ValpoAthletics.com.