DUNEDIN, Fla. -- Purdue baseball scored seven times in the fourth inning and newcomers accounted for a big three-run homer as well as the win and the save on the mound, lifting the Boilers to their third consecutive season-opening win against Connecticut, 11-8, Friday afternoon.
Purdue (1-0) won its fifth straight game at the season-opening Big East/Big Ten Challenge dating back to 2011.
Starting pitcher Brad Schreiber worked four innings of two-hit ball, surrendering just one earned run, in his first appearance on the mound for the Boilers since April 2011. Having reached his pitch-count threshold, he gave way to the bullpen with Purdue leading 7-2 after after the fourth inning.
After UConn retired the first two Boilers in the fifth inning, consecutive two-out singles from Krieg and Talbott kept the inning alive for Conner Hudnall. The junior college transfer playing his first game for Purdue launched a three-run homer to right field to extend the Purdue lead to 10-2.
Connecticut scored four times in the fifth inning to get back into the game. After back-to-back hits to open the eighth inning, the Huskies had pulled within two runs at 10-8. Freshman reliever Patrick Kenney induced a big 6-4-3 double play to account for the first two outs of the eighth. In the ninth, he retired UConn's No. 2 hitter, Vinny Siena, to end the game with Siena representing the potential tying and preseason All-American LJ Mazzilli waiting on deck.
Freshman Eddie De LaRiva earned the win with 2 2/3 innings of two-run ball. He was able to limit the damage in the fifth inning after UConn had already scored three times when he entered the game. The Chicagoland native also worked a 1-2-3 seventh inning, one of only two 1-2-3 frames for Purdue pitchers on the day.
Josh Estill and Talbott each finished with three hits. Estill reached base safely twice in the seven-run fourth inning, collecting the first hit of the frame and later walking in his second plate appearance.
Connecticut starting pitcher Anthony Marzi hit three batters to set the stage for the Boilers' big seven-run inning. Purdue led 2-1 when Krieg connected for the first two-run double to left field. Talbott followed with another shot down the left field line that plated two more and chased Marzi. Jack Picchiotti and Sean McHugh also singled home a run during the rally.
Senior Jake Hansen didn't enter the game until the bottom of the eighth, as a defensive a defensive replacement at shortstop, but he was part of three significant plays in the final frames. In the eighth, he started the 6-4-3 double play induced by Kenney. That came with runners on first and second with no outs.
In the top of the ninth, Hansen singled with one out, took second on a bunt by Krieg and scored when Siena couldn't handle a ground ball to third base off the bat of Talbott.
The game ended on a well-hit ball off Siena's bat. Kenney got a glove on the ball to slow it down enough to allow Hansen to make a play on it and flip it to Krieg for a force at second base.
During the Boilers' 2012 Big Ten championship season they scored seven or more runs in an inning seven times.
Purdue takes on South Florida Saturday at Bright House Field, the spring training home of the Philadelphia Phillies, at 7:30 p.m. on day two of the Big East/Big Ten Challenge. The Boilermakers and Huskies will play again Sunday at 1 p.m.
HUDNALL GOES DEEP!! 3-run bomb to right field. 10-2 Boilers. 3-run rally all coming with 2 outs. 1st homer of the year for Purdue.