By Chris Rogers
Mike Shawaryn came out on the short end of a pitchers’ duel as the Terps (24-20, 9-7 Big Ten) fell to Illinois, 4-2, in the first game of Saturday’s doubleheader in College Park.
Shawaryn (4-4), fresh off his first career complete game April 29 at Penn State, allowed four runs (three earned) and five hits over seven innings. The only major blemish on his line was a three-run fourth inning in which he allowed four straight two-out hits.
He surrendered one run in the first after Illini leadoff man Jack Yalowitz reached on an error by shortstop Kevin Smith, stole second, and came around to score on a groundout. He cruised after that, however, as he didn’t allow a hit through 3.2 innings, while the Terps scored two to stake him to a one-run lead. But the wheels came off in the fourth, as Illinois cleanup man Michael Hurwitz lined a two-out double to the gap in right-center. Pat McInerney followed with a bloop single to left, scoring Hurwitz to tie the game. After another hit, Dan Rowbottom singled down the left field line, driving in two and giving Illinois a 4-2 lead. Shawaryn got out of the jam with a strikeout, and returned to previous form in subsequent innings, allowing just one more hit through the seventh inning.
But the damage was done, as the Terps’ bats fell silent against Illinois starter Cody Sedlock, who allowed two runs (one earned) on three hits in his first complete game of the season. It appeared Maryland had his number early, as a Smith single and a Nick Dunn double put two on and one out for the Terps in the first. Costes drove in a run on a groundout, but Kevin Biondic grounded out to end the inning. Maryland struck again in the seventh, when Anthony Papio walked and moved to third on Andrew Bechtold’s single to right. Zach Jancarski then hit a ground ball back to Sedlock for what appeared to be a tailor-made double play, but Sedlock threw the ball into center field, allowing Papio to score. Bechtold was thrown out advancing to third, but Jancarski was safe at first. With the top of the order coming up, Maryland had a chance to add on, but Jancarski was thrown out stealing second to end the frame.
Sedlock dominated the Terps after this, as he didn’t allow a hit for the remaining seven innings. Only Kevin Smith reached, on a throwing error by third baseman Trent Hammond, but he was tagged out immedia
tely after being called safe when he turned into fair territory. With two out in the ninth, Nick Dunn lined a ball down the left field line for what looked to be a sure base hit, but Rowbottom made a diving grab to end the game.
The Terps will look to even the series with the Illini in Game 2 of the doubleheader Saturday at 4:05 p.m. Taylor Bloom (5-3, 2.12 ERA) will take the hill for Maryland, opposite Illinois southpaw Doug Hayes (6-3, 2.93 ERA).