News From Terre Haute, Indiana


May 30, 2014

Stanford's Quantrill controls Sycamores

ISU falls into Bloomington Regional loser's bracket

BLOOMINGTON — To get the better of Stanford starting pitcher Cal Quantrill, Indiana State's pitching staff was going to have to be at their absolute best in their NCAA Bloomington Regional opener.

Ryan Keaffaber, ISU's starter, wasn't bad, but on a day where Quantrill was dominant, not bad wasn't good enough. Stanford broke open a pitcher's duel with a four-run sixth and the Cardinal defeated the Sycamores 8-1 at Bart Kaufman Field.

"I thought it was a game that could've swung either way in the first five innings," ISU coach Mitch Hannahs said. "I thought we had a couple of opportunities to put more pressure on Stanford than we did. I was pleased with the way we played, we just let a couple of situations get away from us."

ISU -- in the midst of a season-long four-game losing streak -- will play Youngstown State or Indiana in an elimination game at 2 p.m. today.

Quantrill was sublime for Stanford. Quantrill got the complete game victory as he struck out six and allowed just four hits. He was throwing in the 90s into the ninth inning.

"Once he got settled in, once he got the jitters out, his changeup got sharper in the middle innings. His slider was good. The inability to crack him in the first three or four innings allowed him to get much better as he went on," Hannahs said.

Quantrill, son of 13-year big-league relief pitcher Pat Quantrill, constantly got ahead in the count against ISU batters and the Sycamores could never get any kind of rhythm going against him at the plate.

"He was throwing all three of his pitches for strikes and that kept us off-balance. It's tough to get to him when he's doing that," ISU right fielder Jacob Hayes said.

Keaffaber got in trouble in the first inning as he fell behind to Stanford's first three batters. He escaped harm in from the first two batters, but when Alex Blandino got a two-out base hit, the Cardinal were in business. Singles followed by Austin Slater and Zach Hoffpauir, the last knocked in Blandino to make it 1-0.

Keaffaber threw 26 pitches in the inning. The freshman admitted he was nervous.

"I had some butterflies and I got behind in all of my counts. I was fortunate enough to get two pop-ups, but I couldn't work out of it from there," Keaffaber said.

ISU (35-17) had runners at second and third in the first inning -- thanks primarily to a two-base error by third baseman Blandino as he tried to catch a pop up above the mound -- but the Sycamores would only get two baserunners on between the second and fifth innings.

Fortunately for ISU, Keaffaber settled down and retired 10 straight Stanford batters. Entering the sixth inning, ISU still trailed by just a single run, but the sixth proved fateful.

Hannahs wanted to stretch Keaffaber to keep ISU's bullpen fresh for the regional, but when Danny Diekroeger and Blandino led off with singles, the warning signs were evident.

Stanford (31-23) loaded the bases with one out. ISU left fielder Connor McClain made a sensational one-out catch on a Brant Whiting liner in the gap. Had it dropped, it would've cleared the bases. As it was, it was a sacrifice fly to make it 2-0.

In the end, McClain's catch was rendered moot. Keaffaber pitched to Stanford left fielder Jack Klein, who had only 30 at-bats all season. Klein, however, deposited a hanging change-up into the left field bullpen for a three-run home run that put the Cardinal up 5-0.

A five-run lead was going to be very difficult for the Sycamores to overcome against Quantrill. A Hayes RBI double in ISU's half of the sixth did cut the deficit to 5-1, but Hayes' base-hit proved to be the last ISU would get.

Hannahs dismissed the notion that ISU's offense got itself out of rhythm. He gave the credit to Quantrill for making the Sycamores try to battle out of unfavorable counts.

"We struck out six times against a good arm. We put good swings on against a good arm. I wasn't disappointed with our approach or [ISU's] battle in the box. I think at the end of the day, you tip your hat to [Quantrill] for doing a good job," Hannahs said.

The back end of ISU's bullpen made the final margin look less competitive than the game really was in the ninth. Stanford scored three in a final frame that included four consecutive base hits off ISU reliever A.J. McElderry.

ISU seeks its first regional victory since 1995 today. ISU split the season series with Indiana and did not play Youngstown State this season.

STANFORD (AB-R-H-BI) -- Edman ss 5-0-1-1, Diekroeger 1b 5-1-2-0, Blandino 3b 5-2-2-0, Slater cf 4-0-1-0, Hoffpauir rf 3-1-1-1, Whiting c 2-1-0-1, Klein lf 3-1-2-3, James dh 0-0-0-0, Taylor dh 3-0-0-0, Jackson dh 1-1-1-0, Doran 2b 4-1-1-1. TOTALS 35-8-11-7.

INDIANA STATE (AB-R-H-BI) -- Curry cf 4-1-2-0, Zimmerman 3b 4-0-0-0, Hayes rf 3-0-1-1, Fitzgerald c 3-0-0-0, Romero dh 4-0-0-0, Wampler ss 4-0-1-0, Zahn 1b 3-0-0-0, Hannahs 2b 3-0-0-0. TOTALS 31-1-4-1.


Indiana State=000=001=000=--=1

E -- Blandino (11). DP -- SU 1. LOB -- SU 5, ISU 5. 2B -- Hayes (12). HR -- Klein (1). S -- Slater (6), Klein (3). SF -- Whiting (3). SB -- Wampler (11).



Quantrill (W, 6-5)=9=4=1=1=2=6

Indiana State


Keaffaber (L, 3-2)=6=7=5=5=1=3


Dove=1 1/3=0=1=1=1=0



WP -- Kolarik (4). A -- 2,164. T -- 2:33.

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