After struggling in their Spring Break opener, the Urbana University baseball team bounced back with back-to-back dominant pitching performances in a doubleheader sweep on Monday afternoon. Behind newcomers Billy Kosachook and Justin Robinson, the Blue Knights beat the Cardinals from Saginaw Valley State University 5-2 and 1-0 at the NCAA D-II Winning Innings Invitational in Clearwater, Florida.
Kosachook took the mound for UU in Game 1, throwing a complete game 4-hitter. The junior transfer struck out 6 in 7 innings of work. He did not walk a single Cardinal hitter, but he found himself behind 2-1 after six innings of work. In the top of the seventh, Urbana erupted for 4 runs to take the 5-2 lead. Junior Drew Ryan provided the game-tying hit after a couple of Cardinal errors. Junior catcher Robert Tavone Jr. drove in the go-ahead run with a 1-out infield single. The Blue Knights tacked on a couple of insurance runs later in the inning on a passed ball and an RBI single from junior Aaron Bingham. Kosachook closed the door on the Cardinals in the bottom of the seventh, striking out the first two batters before inducing a game-ending groundout. The win is the second in as many appearances for the new Blue Knights. Kosachook has allowed just 2 earned runs in 13 innings of work this season.
In Game 2, Urbana starter Justin Robinson managed to one-up Kosachook's Game 1 dominance. The junior southpaw threw a complete game shutout, striking out 8 Cardinals along the way. He allowed just 4 hits and made an early Urbana run stand in the pitching duel. That run came after a leadoff walk to Urbana's first batter of the day. Drew Ryan drew a walk, advanced to second on Taylor Nehls' sacrifice and later scored on a wild pitch. Robinson improved to 1-0 on the season. He currently sports a 0.77 ERA after allowing just one earned run through his first 11.2 innings of work.
The sweep improves Urbana's mark to 5-2 overall and 2-1 on Spring Break. SVSU slips to 0-3 on the year. On Tuesday, the Blue Knights battle Clearwater Christian College under the lights starting at 6:00 p.m.