Beavers drop doubleheader to Saint John's
March 5, 2015
By: Ryan Schadewald, sports information assistant
FORT MYERS, Fla. - The Bluffton University baseball team fell in both games of a double dip on Thursday, Mar. 5 to the St John’s Johnnies. The Johnnies won game one, 10-0, and they scored five runs in the bottom of the ninth to win game number two, 14-13. The Beavers dropped to 3-4 on the year, while St John’s improved to 5-3.
In the opener, St John’s starter Tyler Delwiche threw a gem, going six innings and giving up just three runs while striking out 10 Bluffton hitters. Bluffton senior Nate Simonds (Ypsilanti, Mich./Lincoln) threw well through two innings before the wheels came off as the Johnnies pushed eight runs across in the third inning, many on bloop hits and bleeders that found holes in the infield. Delwiche breezed through the first six innings and the Johnnies brought in Marcus Barone who threw a scoreless seventh to finish up the first game.
Simonds’ final line showed nine runs in just three innings of work. Garrett Siefer (Maumee) came in and tossed the last four innings well, giving up just one run on three hits. The offense garnered just four hits in the opener, fanning 11 times. It was also the first time the Bluffton offense failed to plate a run on this young season.
The offense clicked early and often in game number two, as the Beavers opened with four runs in the top of the first. The inning began with a double to left from sophomore Luke Hickey (Toledo/Whitmer) followed by a Tyler Spalding (Willis, Mich./Lincoln) base hit. Hickey crossed the dish on an error, before back-to-back RBI singles from Blake Fox (Berne, Ind./South Adams) and Michael Alexander (Monroe) gave Bluffton a 3-0 lead. The final run came on a double steal that plated Fox to make it 4-0.
St John’s put two across in the first and three more in the second to take a 5-4 advantage. But in the sixth, Bluffton would plate two more with RBI singles from Spalding and Mike Castro (Reynoldsburg) for a 6-5 lead. The Johnnies took it back with two more in the seventh to make it 7-6.
Bluffton’s top of the eighth saw the Beavers roll off five runs thanks to three errors from the Johnnies, opening up an 11-7 cushion. The only RBI hit came from Spalding, his second run-scoring single of the game. The Johnnies chipped away with two more in the bottom half, though, to cut that lead to 11-9. The Beavers responded with two more runs for a 13-9 lead before another barrel of trouble came in the bottom of nine, as the Johnnies put five runs on the board when Jantscher capped the game with a walk-off bases loaded three-run double to shock the Beavers by a 14-13 final.
The Beavers got four innings apiece from sophomores Corey Johnson (Waverly) and Taylor Gambrell (Bowling Green). Johnson gave up five runs (four earned) on 11 hits, while Gambrell allowed four runs (three earned) on eight hits. Austin Prosser (Galion) pitched the ninth inning, giving up all five runs without recording an out in suffering his first loss of the young season.
Luke Hickey had another great game with the bat, going 3-for-6 with four runs scored. Tyler Spalding also had a nice day from the two hole, going 3-for-6 with two RBI and two runs scored. Clayton Siders (Delaware/Worthington Christian) finished the game 2-for-4 with two runs scored, while Michael Alexander had two RBI in the loss.
The Beavers wrap up their spring break trip to Florida on Friday, Mar. 6, with a single game against the Alvernia College Crusaders. First pitch is set for 9 a.m.