EVANSTON, Ill. – Junior John O’Reilly struck out a career-high eight hitters over seven innings, but Rutgers baseball left nine runners on base in a 4-0 loss to Northwestern Friday at Miller Park. It was the start of the Scarlet Knights’ third doubleheader in the last eight days.
O’Reilly (4-7) competed seven frames in his 14th start of the season. The right-hander escaped a bases-loaded, no-out jam unharmed in the first, totaling eight runners left on base. In addition, he fanned four-straight hitters to end the fourth and start the fifth. Sophomore Kevin Romero followed up with one perfect inning of relief.
Offensively, RU (19-33, 7-15) totaled eight hits, with sophomore Carmen Sclafani collecting a double and a single. Senior Mike Carter also hit a double in the first at bat of the game.
Northwestern (23-28, 12-11) scored first on a ball through the infield that plated two runs in the second. O’Reilly would keep it a 2-0 game through the middle innings until the Wildcats connected for a two-out, two-run single in the seventh inning.
Rutgers’ best chance to score came in the top of the eighth when freshman Kevin Welsh reached on an error, Carter was hit by a pitch and senior Christian Campbell singled to load the bases with no outs. However, a strikeout and double play ended the threat.
Hank Christie (5-4) earned the win for the home team with five strikeouts over seven innings, while Sam Lawrence worked the final two frames.
Game two of the doubleheader followed.
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