Purdue's Most Memorable Games of 2012: Part 1

PURDUESPORTSDOTCOM Relief ace Blake Mascarello was a regular contributor to many of Purdue's most memorable wins of 2012.
PURDUESPORTSDOTCOM
Relief ace Blake Mascarello was a regular contributor to many of Purdue's most memorable wins of 2012.
PURDUESPORTSDOTCOM

June 13, 2012


Top Games of 2012 Part Two

2012 Season Recap | Top 10 Games of 2011

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind.-- Purdue baseball enjoyed a historically successful season in 2012, winning a program-record 45 games and a pair of Big Ten Conference championship titles. But in a campaign that featured 59 games over 16 weeks of action, some games and victories prove to be more memorable than others.

The following is a compilation of the Boilers' top games of 2012 as selected by the athletics communications staff. Part one features the Honorable Mention list and games 11-20.

Honorable Mention
Feb. 18 - Purdue 6, Cincinnati 0: Breedlove fans 11 over 7 shutout innings >>> Recap | Boxscore
Feb. 26 - Purdue 14, Western Carolina 7: Purdue blows it open with 7-run sixth inning >>> Recap | Boxscore
March 10 - Purdue 22, at Murray State 1: Boilers pound out program-record 30 hits >>> Recap | Boxscore
March 15 - Purdue 8, at Wichita State 3: Purdue scores five in seventh to pull out win >>> Recap | Boxscore
March 16 - Purdue 10, at Wichita State 5: Haase & McHugh lead Boilers to 10th straight win >>> Recap | Boxscore
March 24 - Purdue 8, at Ohio St. 1: Breedlove goes the distance to finish doubleheader sweep >>> Recap | Boxscore
March 25 - at Ohio St. 5, Purdue 4: Six runs score in final inning & a half but Boilers can't sweep >>> Recap | Boxscore
March 28 - at Purdue 6, IPFW 1: Ramer fans 9 over 8 IP, Boilers score late to avoid upset >>> Recap | Boxscore | Photo Gallery
April 6 - Purdue 7, at Northwestern 0: Haase dominates NU with two-hit shutout >>> Recap | Boxscore
April 13 - at Purdue 3, Illinois 0: Haase wins pitcher's duel in another series-opening win >>> Recap | Boxscore | Photo Gallery
April 27 - at Purdue 6, Michigan St. 2: Serrato's slam leads Purdue to series-opening win >>> Recap | Boxscore | Photo Gallery
May 11 - at Purdue 4, Michigan 0: Haase's third career CG shutout is record 38th win >>> Recap | Boxscore
May 13 - Michigan 4, Purdue 3: Boilers have their chances late but can't finish sweep >>> Recap | Boxscore | Photo Gallery 
June 1 - Purdue 7, Valparaiso 2: Purdue posts first NCAA Tourney win in late-night affair >>> Recap | Boxscore | Photo Gallery

20.) April 11 - Purdue 15, at Ball State 2: At first glance, the final score might seem to indicate this was just another blow out win among the Boilers' current 17-game midweek win streak dating back to March 2011. Instead, it's probably a better indicator of the quick-strike, game-changing nature the Purdue offense possessed. The Boilermakers trailed 2-1 after four innings and carried only a 3-2 lead into the sixth. Oh but what a sixth inning it was. Highlighted by home runs from Angelo Cianfrocco and David Miller, who both went deep in their second at-bats of the frame, Purdue scored a season-high 12 times in the top of the sixth. Seventeen batters came to the plate. Five Boilers reached base safely twice, highlighted by two-hit innings for Cianfrocco and Stephen Talbott. It was Purdue's biggest rally since also scoring 12 times in a March 2008 home win against Western Illinois. >>> Recap | Boxscore

19.) Feb. 18 - Purdue 9, Connecticut 4: After the season opener against Cincinnati was postponed until Saturday evening due to rain, the Boilers drew UConn as their season-opening opponent for the second year in a row. And Purdue defeated the emerging Big East power for the second year in a row. Two season-long themes emerged on this Saturday morning in St. Petersburg: extended rallies versus opposing bullpens and the excellence of Blake Mascarello in relief. Trailing 4-3 entering the seventh inning, Purdue posted back-to-back three-run frames. Five of the six runs were charged against hard-throwing UConn reliever David Fischer after he had struck out the side in the sixth. The bottom of the lineup ignited both rallies. Mascarello retired 12 of the 14 batters he faced over four innings of scoreless relief. >>> Recap | Boxscore

18.) May 17 - Purdue 11, at Iowa 8: The Boilermakers arrived in Iowa City for the final weekend of the regular season needing one win to clinch the Big Ten title outright. Purdue took care of business right away with a Thursday night win, lighting up the scoreboard with seven runs over the first two innings. Things would not come as easy the rest of the weekend for the Boilers, but the ball was flying out of the ballpark on this night at Duane Banks Field. Cameron Perkins homered in his first two at-bats and Sean McHugh and Ryan Bridges also connected for solo shots. Purdue scored four times with two outs in the first and made it 7-0 after Perkins' second bomb of the night. Iowa had nothing to lose and didn't go quietly, making it a 9-7 game entering the seventh. Blake Mascarello retired six in a row after issuing a leadoff walk in the seventh, closing out the team's 41st win of the year. >>> Recap | Boxscore

17.) April 24 - Purdue 3, at Illinois State 2: Illinois State still stands as the last team to defeat the Boilers in midweek action, spoiling the 2011 home opener at Lambert Field. Thanks to a two-out RBI single from Sean McHugh and a two-run homer from Kevin Plawecki, Purdue managed to win a game in which it committed three errors and grounded into five double plays. After Robert Ramer (5 IP, 0 ER) and Calvin Gunter (3 IP, 1 R) teamed up for eight innings of two-run ball, three different Purdue pitchers recorded an out in the ninth inning. Jack DeAno retired a pinch hitter to begin the ninth but hit the ISU leadoff man with a pitch to put the potential tying run on base. Mike Sudbury uncorked a wild pitch on his first offering but regrouped to win his lefty-lefty matchup with reigning Missouri Valley Player of the Week Ty Wiesemeyer, retiring the outfielder on a hang with `em line drive to right. Nick Wittgren then closed out the win by striking out ISU No. 3 hitter Kevin Tokarski. The road team has won six consecutive games in the Purdue-Illinois State midweek series dating back to 2009. At 32-6, the Boilers went to bed that night with the best winning percentage (.842) in the country. >>> Recap | Boxscore

16.) March 2 - Purdue 9, at Auburn 8: The Boilermakers scored early and scored late, hanging on for a one-run win after Nick Wittgren left the potential game-tying run at second base. Purdue jumped out to a 4-0 lead and tacked on what proved to be four key insurance runs over the final two innings. Tyler Spillner and Eric Charles were both swinging hot bats at the top of the lineup, finishing with four hits apiece. Cameron Perkins and Kevin Plawecki each recorded three RBI, collecting their 100th career RBI in the process. But it was singles from David Miller in both the eighth and ninth innings that led to insurance runs. Stephen Talbott advanced Miller with a sac bunt in both frames en route to finishing the night with three sacrifices. In the bottom of the ninth trailing 9-5, Auburn loaded the bases without hitting the ball out of the infield. Wittgren took over for Blake Mascarello and prevented the game-tying run from scoring, striking out a pinch hitter to finish off Purdue's first win against a Southeastern Conference opponent since 2007. >>> Recap | Boxscore

15.) April 20 - Purdue 8, at Nebraska 5: The Boilermakers' first appearance of the season on the Big Ten Network doubled as their first-ever appearance at Haymarket Park in Lincoln, Neb. Purdue quickly silenced the large crowd of Husker faithful, scoring four times with two outs in the first inning and extending the lead to 5-0 on a solo home run from Cameron Perkins in the second. Barrett Serrato, Angelo Cianfrocco and Andrew Dixon each delivered a two-out RBI single in the top of the first. The Nebraska bats came alive though, eventually tying the game with a three-run fourth inning. But after a leadoff single from Eric Charles in the top of the fifth, Perkins put Purdue in front for good with another home run to left field. Perkins' third career multi-homer game was impressive but it was Blake Mascarello that emerged as the star of the night. The lefty retired all 13 batters he faced over 4 2/3 innings of scoreless relief, closing out the victory with his longest out of the season. Purdue won the opener of every Big Ten series in 2012. However, this game was the only one in which Joe Haase did not earn the victory. >>> Recap | Boxscore | BTN Video Highlights

14.) Feb. 19 - Purdue 15, Notre Dame 8: Thirteen pitchers were used in this Sunday slugfest on the final day of the season-opening Big Ten/Big East Challenge. The Purdue offense got off to a slow start, going hitless until the fourth inning and trailing 4-1 entering the top of the sixth. Notre Dame had burned the Boilers with a big inning, an 11-run fourth, at Al Lang Stadium a year earlier. Purdue returned the favor on this day, scoring nine times in the sixth. The first 10 Boilers to come to the plate in the inning reached base safely. Even though he was the eighth Purdue player to hit in the inning, Cameron Perkins' grand slam to left field changed the stakes, extending the Boilers' 5-4 lead to 9-4. It was the first slam by a Purdue player since April 2010. The Boilermakers went on to score in each of the final five innings en route to posting their first win against Notre Dame since 2000. >>> Recap | Boxscore

13.) April 15 - at Purdue 5, Illinois 3: The finale of a low-scoring series (the teams combined for 16 runs in three games) at Lambert Field was decided in the eighth inning. The Fighting Illini took advantage of a leadoff walk and a throwing error, tying the game in the top of the frame. But Blake Mascarello induced a big inning-ending 6-4-3 double play ball off the bat of the Illini's No. 3 hitter with the go-ahead run on third base. Purdue scored three of its five runs on wild pitches, including the go-ahead tally in the bottom of the eighth. Kevin Plawecki walked to begin the frame and advanced 90 feet twice on productive outs by Barrett Serrato and Angelo Cianfrocco. With two outs, David Miller kept his at-bat long enough that Illini pitcher Matt Milroy threw a fastball to the backstop to allow Plawecki to score. Miller eventually walked and scored on a two-out single from Andrew Dixon. Mascarello pitched a 1-2-3 ninth inning to finish off the Boilers' second consecutive Big Ten series sweep and give head coach Doug Schreiber his program-record 408th career win. >>> Recap | Boxscore | Photo Gallery 1 | Photo Gallery 2

12.) March 13 - Purdue 4, at Missouri State 2: For the fourth game of their eight-game spring break trip, the Boilers visited Springfield, Mo., for a Tuesday night game against the Missouri Valley Conference preseason favorites. Entering the night, Purdue and Missouri State were a combined 23-6. Both teams would go on to qualify for the NCAA Tournament and win 40 games. Connor Podkul was tabbed to make his first collegiate start and the freshman performed well, holding the Bears without a hit until a leadoff single in the fifth. Blake Mascarello and Nick Wittgren backed up Podkul with 4 2/3 innings of one-run relief. Wittgren did not give up a hit over two innings to earn his program-record 16th career save. Offensively, David Miller had three hits in his return to his native Missouri, driving in the first run of the night with a two-out single in the second inning. Cameron Perkins delivered a pair of run-scoring extra-base hits, including a solo home run into the MSU bullpen in left field in the eighth inning. >>> Recap | Boxscore

11.) May 25 - Purdue 3, Indiana 0: They finished one-two in the conference standings for the first time and the two old rivals did not play each other in the regular season. After both the Boilermakers and Hoosiers rallied to win their Big Ten Tournament openers Thursday, they squared off Friday night under the lights in the final of the winner's bracket. Led by 7 1/3 shutout innings from Lance Breedlove, Purdue carried a 2-0 lead into the top of the eighth. Indiana loaded the bases with three straight one-out singles. Blake Mascarello replaced Breedlove to setup a lefty-lefty matchup with Kyle Schwarber. Mascarello got Schwarber to hit a check-swing ground ball to Cameron Perkins at third base. Purdue was unable to complete the double play but the second base umpire ruled that IU's Justin Cureton did not slide directly into the second base bag, as NCAA rules mandate, and awarded the Boilers the inning-ending twin killing. Eric Charles, Perkins and Kevin Plawecki drove in runs offensively. The two teams would meet again the following night in the tournament championship game. >>> Recap | Boxscore | BTN Video Highlights

Click HERE for part two of the countdown...