RIO GRANDE, Ohio — A nightmarish start to River States Conference play continued on Friday afternoon for the University of Rio Grande baseball team, with the RedStorm dropping a pair of outings to Indiana University Kokomo.
The Cougars pounded out 11 hits in each end of the doubleheader, taking the twin bill by scores of 12-8 and 7-1.
The sweep left IU Kokomo at 12-7 overall and 6-0 in conference play.
Meanwhile, the RedStorm slipped to 9-18 overall and 0-6 in the RSC with the two losses.
IUK never trailed in the opener, jumping to a 7-0 second inning lead.
Rio Grande did manage to close the gap to 8-7 after scoring twice in both the fifth and sixth innings, but the Cougars pulled away for good with one run in the seventh and three more in the eighth.
Noah Hurlock went 4-for-5 with a home run and four RBI for Kokomo, while Riley Garczynski was 2-for-6. Patrick Mills and Jared Heard added doubles in the winning effort.
Sam Hanshaw recorded an out of the only batter he faced in the fifth inning to get the win for the Cougars, while Ryan Beck earned his second save despite allowing three runs over four innings.
Junior Brady Choban (Wadsworth, OH) returned from injury to start for the RedStorm, but suffered his fourth loss in five decisions after allowing three hits, three runs and a walk in just 2/3 of an inning.
At the plate, junior Gavin Lovesky (Willowbrook, OH) hit a pair of home runs and drove in three runs, while sophomore Jakob Johnson (Pickerington, OH) went 2-for-4 with an RBI and sophomore Darius Jordan (Minford, OH) hit his first home run of the season.
IUK started fast in game two as well, scoring twice in the first inning and once in the second before lowering the boom with three more fourth inning markers.
Mills and Dylan Steele both had two hits, including a home run, and two RBI, while Hurlock finished 2-for-3 and Garczynski drove in a pair of runs. Luke Hanson also doubled in the win.
JT Holton went the distance to get the victory for IUK, scattering six hits and a run over seven innings. He also walked two and fanned nine.
Junior Clayton Surrell (Carroll, OH) started and lost for Rio Grande, surrendering eight hits and five runs over four innings.
Junior AJ Thomas (Pickerington, OH) went 2-for-4 with double and freshman Brady Conley (Westerville, OH) added a double of his own in the loss for the RedStorm.
Rio Grande is scheduled to return to action on Tuesday when it travels to Campbellsville (Ky.) University for a non-conference doubleheader.
First pitch for game one is set for 1 p.m.
Randy Payton is the Sports Information Director for the University of Rio Grande.