EVANSVILLE, Ind. –  The University of Evansville baseball team launched four home runs on Sunday, and produced a pair of five-run innings, as the Purple Aces completed a three-game Missouri Valley Conference series sweep of the visiting Illinois State Redbirds with a 13-1 run-rule victory at German American Bank Field at Charles H. Braun Stadium in Evansville.

“What a game! What a weekend!  What a series for our ballclub!” said UE head coach Wes Carroll.  “It is really difficult to sweep in this conference, and I think that it really started on the mound today for us.  What Shane Harris, Jace Kressin and Max Hansmann did today was pretty impressive, as they shut down a really good offense.

“Offensively, I thought that, top to bottom in our order, our guys were able to produce some great at-bats today.  Harrison Taubert had the huge double to get us started in the third inning, and then obviously, his three-run home run was big, as it broke things open for us.  But, I thought almost every player in the lineup today had a great approach, and hopefully, we can keep that rolling down the stretch.”

Harris cruised through the first three innings for UE on the mound, allowing just a lone single while retiring nine of the 10 men he faced with three strikeouts.  Evansville would then give Harris (3-4) all of the run support he would need on the afternoon in the bottom of the third inning with two runs.

After a lead-off walk by senior shortstop Simon Scherry, junior outfielder Harrison Taubert roped a double to left field to put two men in scoring position with no one out.  Graduate outfielder Mark Shallenberger delivered a sacrifice fly to deep right field to plate the game’s first run, before senior outfielder Kip Fougerousse had an RBI single to left-center field to give UE a 2-0 lead.

Taubert would break things open for UE in the bottom of the fourth inning, as he ignited a five-run frame with a three-run home run to right-center field to grow the lead to 5-0.  Then, after a Shallenberger double and a ground out, graduate first baseman Chase Hug crushed a two-run home run to right field to take a 7-0 lead.

Fougerousse added an RBI single in the fifth inning to push the lead to 8-0.  The Redbirds would scratch across a run in the top of the sixth inning on a sacrifice fly, before UE exploded for five more runs in the bottom of the sixth inning to enact the mercy rule.  Graduate third baseman Brent Widder and freshman second baseman Brodie Peart hit back-to-back home runs in the frame, while Fougerousse added another RBI single to help UE post its eighth victory in the last nine contests.

Fougerousse went a team-best 3-for-5 with three RBI, while Taubert, Peart, and Scherry all had two-hit games.  All nine members of the UE starting lineup had hits in the contest.  Harris earned the victory on the mound by tossing 5.0 shutout innings, allowing just two hits and a walk while striking out four.

With the victory, Evansville moves into a tie for second place in the MVC standings with an 18-17 overall record and 7-5 MVC mark.  Illinois State, meanwhile, falls to 18-15 overall and 7-5 in the Valley with the loss.  Evansville will now hit the road for the next five games, beginning on Tuesday night at 5 p.m. central time as the Purple Aces will travel north to Bloomington, Indiana to take on the Indiana Hoosiers.  Tuesday’s game can be heard live in the Tri-State area on 107.1 FM-WJPS.