May 14, 2024123456789RHE
Win: BENNECHE (3-2) 2.010020
Loss: Krier (1-7) 3.087703
Maka (VALPO) 402000
LIOLIOS (NU) 422100
Thurston, Giusti Homer on Tuesday at Northwestern
Tuesday, May 14, 2024
Thurston, Giusti Homer on Tuesday at Northwestern
Alex Thurston launched his sixth home run of the season on Tuesday.

The Valparaiso University baseball team received five shutout innings from four different relief pitchers and the middle infielders provided pop as shortstop Alex Thurston (Fowler, Ind. / Benton Central) and second baseman Connor Giusti (Hoffman Estates, Ill. / Fremd [Wisconsin Oshkosh]) both homered, but Northwestern prevailed 7-2 in Tuesday’s nonconference finale in Evanston, Ill.

How It Happened

  • Valpo threatened in the top of the first, but left runners at the corners. In the bottom of the inning, a two-out home run by Bennett Markinson put the Wildcats ahead 1-0. Alex Ryan (Lake Mills, Wis. / Lakeside Lutheran) made a nice snag in center to end the frame.
  • Northwestern pushed across a run in the second, but the inning ended when Kaleb Krier and Kade Reinertson (Huxley, Iowa / Ballard Community) combined for a strike-him-out, throw-him-out double play.
  • Valpo got one back in the top of the third as Alex Thurston (Fowler, Ind. / Benton Central) led off the frame with an opposite-field home run to right to make it a 2-1 game.
  • The Wildcats scored five times in the third including a three-run homer by Lorenzo Rios. That expanded the lead to six at 7-1.
  • After Northwestern’s five-run third, Joe Seiber (Homer Glen, Ill. / Lockport [College of DuPage]) was summoned from the bullpen and faced the minimum over the next two innings.
  • Following a scoreless frame from Grant Jablonski (Mishawaka, Ind. / Mishawaka) in the bottom of the sixth, Connor Guisti (Hoffman Estates, Ill. / Fremd [Wisconsin Oshkosh]) led off the top of the seventh with a solo shot.
  • The Beacons inserted another new pitcher for the seventh and Trent Turzenski (Burlington, Wis. / Burlington) posted a zero as Northwestern stranded a pair.
  • The solid bullpen work continued in the bottom of the eighth as Josh Spencer (Woodinville, Wash. / Woodinville [Tacoma]) flipped a scoreless frame. Valpo didn’t score in the top of the ninth and the 7-2 score stood as the final.

Inside the Game

  • Thurston’s home run was his sixth of the season and the ninth of his collegiate career.
  • Giusti’s home run was his seventh of his first year in a Valpo uniform. Five of those home runs have come in his last nine games.
  • Valpo listed its season home run total to 66, moving into sole possession of second in single-season program history, behind only 2001 (81). The Beacons broke a tie with the 1985 team (64) for second in the record book.
  • A pair of hits by Ryan Maka (Oak Forest, Ill. / Oak Forest) paced a seven-hit output for the Beacons.

Up Next

Valpo (14-35) will start the final series of the season on Thursday at 3 p.m. vs. No. 20 Indiana State at Emory G. Bauer Field. The game will air on ESPN+.