Bluffton drops two vs. Muskingum
Muskingum takes two from Beavers
March 7, 2008
FORT MYERS, Fla. - The Bluffton University baseball team lost a heartbreaker to Muskingum College in the opener and saw a five-run first inning by the Muskies power Muskingum to a 11-3 victory and sweep of the Beavers in game two. Bluffton led 9-7 going to the bottom of the seventh before Muskingum rallied for three runs to take the first game by a score of 10-9. The Beavers fell to 5-4 on the season while Coach Grandey's alma mater improved to 6-3.
Muskingum 10, Bluffton 9
Muskingum jumped out to 4-0 lead in the first inning of the lidlifter. Wes Carder led off the frame with a walk and Erik Spitzer singled before Brock Whiteman cleared the bases with a three-run homer. Seth Sibert picked up Brock Huntsman who doubled to right, making it 4-0 after one inning.
The Beavers responded with three runs in the top of the second. Mike Ramthun (Springfield/Southeastern) and Cody McPherson (Millbury/Lake) opened with singles and pulled off a double steal to put two runners in scoring position. A Jimmy McMonagle (Ida, Mich./Ida) groundout plated Ramthun and McPherson crossed the plate on Curtis Schroeder's (Shelby/Shelby) base hit to right field. Ryan Baightel (Wapakoneta/Wapakoneta) followed with a single before Tony Moore (Elida/Elida) drove in Schroeder to make it 4-3.
Bluffton tied the game in the top of the third when McPherson doubled home Mike Ramthun who laced a one-out single to left field.
After Muskingum added a pair of scores in the home half of the third inning, Schroeder led off the fourth with a double to left field and crossed the plate following two Bluffton groundouts.
Two Bluffton scores in the fifth again tied the contest. With one out Mike Ramthun drew a free pass and McPherson singled up the middle. Corey Conn (London/London) smoked an RBI-double to center field. McPherson slid in just ahead of the tag after a Muskingum wild pitch to make the score 7-7 in the fifth.
A Baightel triple to open the sixth forced a Muskingum pitching change and Moore greeted Josh Cornwell with a single to right field for an 8-7 Bluffton lead.
Completing a 4-of-4 day at the dish, McPherson opened the seventh with his second double of the game. McMonagle singled up the gut, giving Bluffton a 9-7 lead with only three outs needed for the victory.
A one-out rally produced four hits and three runs as Muskingum came back for the 10-9 victory over the Beavers.
McPherson continued his hot hitting, going 4-of-4 with three runs scored and one RBI. Schroeder, Moore and Ramthun all smacked two hits while Moore drove in three runs. Mike Ramthun scored three times and Schroeder crossed the plate twice.
Matt Perkins (Convoy/Crestview) dropped to 0-1 after giving up 10 runs on 11 hits in 6.2 innings of work. He finished with three strikeouts and two walks.
Muskingum 11, Bluffton 3
A five-run inning by Muskingum to open game two proved to be the difference as Bluffton never recovered from the disappointing ending to the first game. The Fighing Muskies needed only two hits to post a five-spot on the scoreboard, effectively putting the game on ice before Bluffton ever sent a batter to the plate.
The Muskies tacked two runs on in each of the second, third and fourth innings, bolting to an 11-0 lead going to the bottom of the fourth inning.
The Beavers rallied for three runs in the bottom of the fifth, but Muskingum shut Bluffton down in the sixth and seventh frames for an 11-3 victory and sweep of the Beavers. With one out in the fifth inning, Greg Sigg (Maumee/Maumee) was hit by a pitch. David Riddle (Milford/Milford), who replaced Schroeder behind the plate, singled to left field. Anthony Bryant's (Reynoldsburg/Reynoldsburg) walk loaded the bases for Moore who was also hit by a pitch for the RBI. With the bags still full, A.J. Ramthun (Springfield/Southeastern) ripped a two-RBI single to right field, making the score 11-3. Aubrey Neuhart retired the next two Bluffton hitters and he limited the Beavers to only one hit over the final two innings for the complete game victory.
A.J. Ramthun drove in two runs as Bluffton managed only four hits against Neuhart. Tim Kay (Alpharetta, Ga./Blessed Trinity) fell to 1-1 with the loss. He surrendered nine runs, five earned, on eight hits in two innings on the hill. Freshman Aaron Tuttle (Frankton, Ind./Frankton) limited Muskingum to one hit in two innings of scoreless relief.
Bluffton plays its final game in Florida on Saturday, March 8, 2008. The Beavers will look to avenge a 13-5 loss to Thiel when they meet the Tomcats at 9 a.m.