March 23, 2013

Bulldogs Cling to 5-4 Win at Ohio Wesleyan

DELAWARE, Ohio – The baseball team at Adrian College has strung together three straight wins and improved their record to 5-4 with a non-conference 5-4 win at Ohio Wesleyan on Saturday. The Bulldogs had to rally down 3-0 after four innings but did so behind strong relief pitching and clutch hitting.

The Battling Bishops scored once in the first and twice more in the second inning chasing starter Josh Richardson. Richardson exited after facing 10 batters allowing three earned runs on three hits with two walks and a strikeout. Holden Branch evened his record to 1-1 this season by going 4.2 innings in relief of Richardson. Branch gave up three hits and overpowered five Ohio Wesleyan hitters by strikeout.

Adrian cut the lead to 3-1 in the fifth courtesy of an RBI single by Sam Fischer with two outs. Charles Cooper did a solid job as starter for OWU going five innings and allowing just two hits. Cooper's exit in the sixth was just what Adrian needed as they scored four times to take a 5-3 lead against Brandon Sega. Jamey Sackett started the rally with a one-out double and then the Bulldogs scored all of their runs with two outs. Zach Ryder collected an RBI single scoring Sackett with the team's second run. Ben Yax followed with an RBI single scoring Ryder to make it 3-3. Taylor Milligan came through with the go-ahead RBI on a single through the right side plating Yax. The Bulldogs scored what would be the game-winning run on a balk to conclude the big inning.

Ohio Wesleyan cut the lead to 5-4 in the seventh with an unearned run against Austin Abbott. Aaron Caputo had a leadoff single and took third on a fielding error. Ben Steele lined a sacrifice fly to right with one out scoring Caputo.

Adrian stranded two runners in the eighth but the finishing combo of Tommy Eng and Lucas Willitzer put the finishing touches on the road win. Eng induced three groundouts in the eighth and Willitzer retired all three batters he faced in the ninth for his second save.

Ryder led the team with a 3-for-4 day with a run and RBI. Sackett went 2-for-3 with a pair of walks and hit his first double of the season. The six through nine hitters in the lineup each had a hit for the Bulldogs. Adrian opens MIAA action at Nicolay Field on Monday, Mar. 25 against Hope in a doubleheader beginning at 2 p.m. The Bulldogs defeated the Flying Dutchmen in the championship game of the inaugural MIAA Tournament at Nicolay Field a year ago.