Franklin 13, Bluffton 6
Franklin racks up 17 hits in 13-6 win over Beavers
BLUFFTON, Ohio - The Bluffton University baseball team fell to a hot-hitting Franklin College squad by a final score of 13-6 on Saturday, April 19, before lightning and rain moved the final game of the series to Sunday, April 20. The Beavers dropped to 12-17 overall and 4-9 in the Heartland Conference while Franklin improved to 19-10, with a 12-5 mark in the HCAC.
Franklin 13, Bluffton 6
Franklin College jumped on Bluffton with three runs in the top of the first inning. Lance Noel led off the contest with a home run to right field. Following a hit batter, Joel Chrobak drove a Matt Perkins (Convoy/Crestview) offering over the wall in left field for a 3-0 lead before an out was recorded. The Grizzlies picked up two more hits in the first before Perkins got out of the inning.
Jim Swienconek doubled home Chrobak with no outs in the third frame for a 4-0 Franklin lead.
The Grizzlies put together three hits to make the score 6-0 midway through the fourth inning before the Beavers finally got to Franklin ace Andy Clark in the home half. Tim Kay (Alpharetta, Ga./Blessed Trinity) reached on an infield single and promptly stole second. Chris Bauman (Milford/Milford) was hit by a pitch and Cody McPherson (Millbury/Lake) followed with an RBI single to right center. A base hit by Jimmy McMonagle (Ida, Mich./Ida) plated Bauman. Tony Moore's (Elida/Elida) sacrifice bunt moved both Beavers into scoring position for Steve Roberts (West Salem/Mapleton) who singled them home to cut the Franklin lead to two runs.
Two Franklin hits and a pair of Bluffton errors allowed the Grizzlies to plate two runs in the top of the fifth frame. Paul Strack picked up Derek Smith who opened the inning with a double to left field. Adam Blackburn's base hit to center made the score 8-4 in favor of the visitors.
Bauman doubled down the right field line in the bottom of the fifth and he crossed the plate on a wild pitch to make it a three-run game.
In the top of the sixth inning, Strack doubled to left center and brought both Smith and Swienconek home. A triple from Blackburn resulted in two more runs for the Grizzlies before the Beavers recorded the third out of the inning with Franklin firmly in command, 13-5
Mike Ramthun (Springfield/Southeastern) walked to open the bottom of the seventh. One out and two wild pitches later, Bauman singled to left field for an RBI before Cody Nees induced a game-ending double play to seal the 13-6 victory.
Perkins dropped to 0-4 after giving up six runs, all earned, on 10 hits in 3.2 innings of work on the mound.
Chris Bauman was a perfect 3-of-3 at the plate with two runs scored and one RBI. Steve Roberts drove in two runs in the loss.
The Bluffton University baseball team will finish its three-game HCAC series with Franklin College on Sunday, April 20, 2008. The game is slated to start at 12:30 p.m.