Ryan Garman fires no-hitter against Ashland University

Courtesy Photo / GVSU Athletics
Junior Jared Cowan takes aim at a pitch

Courtesy Photo / GVSU Athletics Junior Jared Cowan takes aim at a pitch

Greg Monahan

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With eight strikeouts on the day and in complete control throughout, Grand Valley State University junior Ryan Garman pitched his way to a no-hitter Sunday against Ashland University GVSU’s 7-0 win.

The Cedar Rapids, Iowa native faced 26 batters and needed less than two hours to get the win, striking out each of the last two Eagles to lock up the no-hitter.

“I was shocked,” said Garman of his reaction after striking out the final batter. “Once he swung through it, I kind of watched it and it took me a second to realize it. Once I saw my catcher Zach Laupp running out, I realized I had just done it. I was so excited.”

Garman’s gem was the seventh no-hitter in school history, as the righthander capped off a weekend sweep with the first hitless game of his career at any level.

“This is definitely the best game I have ever pitched,” said Garman, who is in his first season as a Laker after pitching two years at Johnson County Community College in Kansas. “I’ve never had one before, so it was exciting.”

GVSU head coach Steve Lyon, in his 13th year as the team’s skipper, said he had a good feeling about Garman’s chances when he looked up and saw all zeroes halfway through the game.

“About the fourth inning he kicked it into another gear,” he said. “His velocity seemed to increase, and he’s got such a devastating breaking ball, once his arm gets loose and he starts to increase his velocity he can be pretty tough.”

Garman had a similar feeling as Lyon about midway through, but said he was able to keep it out of his mind until the later stages of the game, which was well in hand by the time he reached the mound in the bottom of the seventh.

“I really didn’t try to think too much about it,” he said. “I just went in each inning and got locked in with my catcher and I just kind of kept going at it.”

Garman’s day had an inauspicious start, as the righty plunked the leadoff man in the first inning, but he was able to set down the next six batters in order. His only blemishes were two hit batsmen, a couple of walks and one batter reaching by an error. Garman only allowed one man to reach second base all game long.

“(GVSU pitching coach Gordie) Alderink wants our pitchers to pay attention when they’re not pitching, and I’m sure Ryan did during the first two games to get a good feel for their lineup,” Lyon said. “He certainly went to work with that and executed his game plan very well.”

The Lakers will next see action when they take on Hillsdale College in the team’s home opener Tuesday.

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