ANN ARBOR, Mich. – Indiana has been really good for a month of Sundays, with pitcher Gabe Bierman being the common denominator. But Michigan was too much on this Sunday in Ann Arbor, beating the Hoosiers 6-1 to win the weekend series.
It was Indiana's first Sunday loss since April 4, and it ended a four-game winning streak for Bierman, who had been the Big Ten's best pitcher in the past month. With the loss, the Hoosiers (24-12) fell one game behind Nebraska in the Big Ten standings, in second place in a virtual tie with Michigan (25-13).
Bierman pitched well, working into the eighth inning, but he allowed two runs in the second inning when he allowed two singles to open the frame, and then allowed runs on a sacrifice fly and a double.
Michigan went up 3-0 in the fourth inning when second baseman Ted Burton doubled, moved to third on a groundout and scored on a wild pitch. Bierman pitched 7 1/3 innings and allowed five hits and four walks. He was also charged with a run in the eighth inning before departing. Michigan scored three runs in the inning, aided by a couple of misplayed balls by Indiana second baseman Paul Toetz. Two of the runs were unearned.
Indiana's hitters had a hard time getting their timing down against Michigan starter Jacob Denner, and didn't have many scoring opportunities early. They didn't get a runner past first base through the first six innings, outside of a solo home run by right fielder Morgan Colopy in the fifth.
Colopy doubled in the seventh, and cartcher Collin Hopkins followed with a single to ignite a potential rally, but Jeremy Houston's groundout ended the threat.
The Big Ten title is still there for the taking for Indiana. The Hoosiers have a busy week ahead, making up a game at home with Illinois on Tuesday, and then playing Big Ten leader Nebraska on Friday and Saturday night in Bloomington. Then the Hoosiers will play Ohio State on Sunday and Monday.
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