OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — Brock Vradenburg went 2 for 3, including a program-record tying 22nd double, and Michigan State edged Rutgers 6-4 on Thursday in the Big Ten Tournament.
Michigan State (33-21), the No. 8 seed, earned its first victory in the conference tournament since 2016 and will play again on Friday. Rutgers (33-23) lost both of its games in the tournament.
Vradenburg tied Blaise Salter (2014) and Chris McCuiston (2002) for the most doubles in a single season at Michigan State. Vradenburg is hitting .403 this season with 13 home runs and 68 RBIs.
Michigan State closer Wyatt Rush shut down the Rutgers offense over the final 4 2/3 innings. Rush threw 72 pitches, allowing just three hits and striking out four.
Rutgers reliever Jake Marshall got a strikeout to strand runners on second and third in the seventh inning, but the Spartans plated a pair of runs on bases-loaded walks in the eighth to break a tie at 4-all.