Bluffton vs. Rose-Hulman
Engineers sweep first two games of HCAC series with Bluffton
April 13, 2007
BLUFFTON, Ohio - The Bluffton University baseball team struggled to string hits together against the Engineers as Rose-Hulman swept the first two games of the Heartland Conference series on Friday, April 13, 2007. In the opener, the Beavers' seventh-inning rally fell short, 5-4. Rose took advantage of four Bluffton errors in the nightcap for a 9-4 victory.
Game one - Rose-Hulman 5, Bluffton 4
The Engineers wasted little time in the first game, jumping out to a 3-0 lead in the top of the second inning. Two walks and a single through the left side loaded the bases with no outs. Josh Nash picked up Tim Braun with his infield single. Chandler Kent's fielder's choice plated Kellen Hurst and a Bluffton balk allowed Adam Knaack to cross the plate.
In the home half of the third, Ryan Baightel (Wapakoneta/Wapakoneta) led off with a single to the shortstop. He motored around on Tony Moore's (Elida/Elida) base hit to right before an inning-ending double play left the score 3-1 in favor of Rose.
Braun's two-out single in the fifth paid dividends for the Engineers. He moved up on a wild pitch and came around to score on Hurst's single through the right side, giving Rose a 4-1 lead.
The Beavers used an inning-opening two-bagger from Cody McPherson (Northwood/Lake) and a Chris Wurm (Bucyrus/Bucyrus) single to center to cut the margin to two runs before the Engineers re-claimed their three-run lead on a Matt Salisbury sacrifice fly in the top of the seventh.
In the home half of the seventh, Bluffton mounted a two-run rally with the tying run at second with one out, but a popup and strikeout helped Rose preserve a 5-4 win in game one. Moore and Tim Kay (Alpharetta, Ga./Blessed Trinity) both crossed the plate on a two-run Curtis Schroeder (Shelby/Shelby) double, putting the game-tying run in scoring position.
Moore put together a 3-of-4 game at the plate with one RBI and one run scored. Schroeder, who drove in a pair of runs, and Baightel both finished with two hits.
Matt Perkins (Convoy/Crestview) went the distance for the second consecutive game, giving up eight hits and five runs in seven innings of work. Perkins, pitching on only three days rest, fell to 0-2 with the loss despite striking out eight Enginners.
Game two - Rose-Hulman 9, Bluffton 4
It was the Beavers who put a run on the scoreboard first in game two. Baightel drew leadoff walk and moved to second on an infield error. He promptly stole third and scored on a Schroeder fielder's choice to the shortstop.
The Engineers stormed right back with three runs in the top of the third, taking advantage of four hits and a hit batsmen to open up a 3-1 lead over Bluffton.
Rose upped its lead to four runs in the top of the fourth when Matt Peplea plated Kent and Salisbury with his double to center field.
Allen Slabaugh (Dalton/Dalton) drove in Wurm to open the fifth and he crossed the plate on Kay's RBI single through the right side, making the score 5-3 after five innings of play.
The Engineers tacked on a score in the sixth and three unearned runs in the eighth to take a 9-3 lead into the final frame.
A Brennan Bauman (Milford/Milford) single pushed Kay across the dish in the bottom of the ninth, but it was not enough as the Engineers took the nightcap by a count of 9-4.
Schroeder, who was 5-of-8 on the day, went 3-of-4 in game two with an RBI. Wurm and Kay both tallied two hits for the Beavers who finished the second game with 11 hits, the same as the Engineers.
Cody McPherson (0-2) made his first start for the Beavers and he gave up six hits and four runs in three innings on the hill.
The Beavers return to action on Saturday, April 14, when they will face Rose-Hulman in game three of the Heartland Conference series here at Bluffton. The contest is slated to start at 12 p.m.