Oklahoma State pitcher Jon Perrin can sling it. Perrin, who is coming off a surgery in his throwing arm, threw for seven shutout innings in the Cowboys 8-1 win over Illinois on Saturday.
"I had pretty good command of all my pitches today," Perrin said. "When you have an aggressive team like this and they're willing to swing the bat, that kind of plays into my strength because I want guys to swing the bat and I pitch to contact.
"And I had really good defensive play behind me and that was pretty much the key to success right there."
The Cowboys (8-5) offense, which only had five hits and two runs in Friday's loss, was able to get the bats started today thanks to a short memory.
"Forget about yesterday, todays a new day," designated hitter Garrett McCain said. "there's going to be a new arm and you really just kind of focus on attacking this guy. Having a short memory in this game, you got to have a short memory and be able to forget."
The offense came out swinging, getting a run in the first and two in the second while getting nine of its first 13 batters on base.
Illinois (10-3-1) pitcher, Drasen Johnson, was able to get in his groove, retiring the next 12 Cowboy batters. Perrin wasn't going giving in easily, though.
"He's just dialing in every pitch," catcher Gage Green said." Makes it easy. It's almost like I'm sitting there catching a bullpen, don't have to do to much, just spotting up and makes the game go by fast."
The shutout was carried into the seventh inning stretch and the Cowboys offense was ready to swing.
In the bottom half of the seventh, the Cowboys got its first three batters on base, forcing Illinois to go to the bullpen. With relief pitcher Cody Sedlock in and two men on base, the Cowboys saw its chance to break open the score.
Sedlock only pitched to three batters and threw 11 pitches, enough for the Cowboys to extend the league to 6-0. The inning continued for the Cowboys as it sent 10 batters up to hit and scored five runs in the inning to give Perrin a comfortable 8-0 lead with two innings left.
"I think we used a couple different weapons," OSU coach Josh Holliday said. "We used the bunt game successfully, we got some runners on base, we used some speed there, put ourselves in scoring position, got a couple big swings of the bat there. A sac fly, big double from Tim, couple base hits."
Perrin continued his dominating performance in the eighth until Illinois catcher Jason Goldstein hit a home run to left field, breaking the shutout.
Closing pitcher Koda Glover came in to pitch for Perrin after the eighth inning, retiring the Illinois side with ease. The Cowboys play Illinois in the series finale Sunday at noon with the series even at 1-1.