Bluffton 16, Defiance 14 (10 innings)
Bluffton scores two in 10th for 16-14 win at Defiance
May 4, 2010
DEFIANCE, Ohio - The Bluffton University baseball team plated two runs in the 10th inning to secure a season split with Defiance College on Tuesday, May 4, 2010. The Beavers improved to 16-21 overall and 6-13 in the Heartland Conference, while Defiance fell to 14-22 and 5-14 in the HCAC.
A Kyle Niermann (Napoleon) double and Nick Broyles (Toledo/Whitmer) triple gave Bluffton a 1-0 lead in the top of the first. Defiance went up 2-1 thanks to a Zach Stallkamp two-run homer in the bottom of the second.
The Beavers took advantage of six hits in the top of the third to push six runs across the dish. Tyler Stephenson (Springfield/Northwestern) drove in Stephen Torres (Lima/Juan Diego) and Nick Broyles with his two-bagger to left center. Michael Knorr (Pickerington/North) singled home Stephenson and two outs later, Kyle Niermann ripped a two-run base knock up the middle. Torres capped the scoring with an infield hit that allowed Greg Bergstedt (Napoleon/Patrick Henry) to cross the plate.
A three-run third inning by the Yellow Jackets was immediately answered in the top of the fourth when Bluffton needed just one hit to add three runs to the visitor's side of the scoreboard. Two walks and a hit batter set the stage for Kyle Niermann's bases-clearing double, one of three two-baggers that Niermann collected in the victory.
Not to be outdone, Defiance came back with five runs in the home half. Four hits, three errors and a sacrifice fly played a part in the surge by the Yellow Jackets that tied the score at 10 after just four frames.
Stephenson pounded a two run shot to left center in the fifth and Stephen Torres followed suit in the sixth, making the score 14-10 in favor of the Beavers.
The Yellow Jackets knotted the score again in the seventh thanks to four runs on three hits and another Bluffton miscue.
Following two scoreless frames by both teams, Bluffton used four hits to make it 16-14 in the top of the 10th. Consecutive one-out singles by Bergstedt, Kyle Trainer (Mechanicsburg) and Miles Richardson (Granville/Newark Catholic) loaded the bases for Stephen Torres who knocked in the game-winner with his two-run single to center field.
Kyle Niermann went 4-of-7 with five RBI and two runs scored from his leadoff position. Torres and Stephenson both ripped three hits, while Broyles, Bergstedt and Trainer all cashed in with two safeties. Torres drove in five and Stephenson knocked in four. Eight Beavers scored two runs each, accounting for the 16 runs put up by the visitors.
Senior Cody McPherson (Northwood/Millbury Lake) earned his fifth win of the season after throwing 3.1 innings of relief. He allowed four runs on four hits with two strikeouts and two walks. Adrian Fritch (Edon) came on with one out and two runners on to nail down the Bluffton win when he got the last two hitters to fly out.
Bluffton wraps up its 2010 campaign when it hosts Franklin College for a three-game HCAC series this weekend. The first contest is slated for 4 p.m. on Friday, May 7, at Memorial Field.