A battle of bullpens was decided by a bases-loaded walk in the top of the 12th inning as visiting Valparaiso earned a 4-3 win in 12 innings over the Illinois State baseball team Tuesday at Duffy Bass Field.
Chase Dawson's bases-loaded walk forced in Riley Dent for the game-winning run. Illinois State went down in order in the bottom of the 12th.
Illinois State (7-19) scored three runs in the bottom of the fifth to tie the game at 3-3, but Valpo (10-16) won the won the game by keeping the Redbirds off the scoreboard for the next seven innings.
Illinois State evened the score with three runs in the bottom of the fifth, courtesy of back-to-back doubles from Bryce Grimm and Collin Braithwaite. Grimm's double to right center scored Noah Sadler, just moments before Braithwaite found the left-center field gap to plate Nick Zouras and Grimm.
Neither team scored again until Dawson's bases-loaded walk in the 12th inning.
Braithwaite, who went 2-for-5 from the plate, was the lone Redbird to record multiple hits. Illinois State drew only one walk in the well-pitched game; Redbird pitchers issued only two free passes.
Redbird starter Colton Johnson allowed two runs over four innings, while striking out a career-high five batters. Jack Landwehr allowed one run over the next two innings, before scoreless appearances by Jeffrey Barton, Trevor Cross and Mitch Vogrin. Jeff Lindgren allowed a pair of singles and hit a batter to load the bases in the 12th before allowing the walk to Dawson, but limited the damage to just a single run.
The Redbirds' previously scheduled game with Northwestern on Wednesday has been canceled due to expected inclement weather. Illinois State will return to Duffy Bass Field on Friday for the beginning of a three-game series with Dayton.