Bluffton 13, Earlham 5
Bluffton offense awakens in 13-5 drubbing of Earlham
April 9, 2013
By: Kyle Stover, sports information assistant
BLUFFTON, Ohio - The Bluffton University baseball team mounted an offensive explosion on Tuesday, April 9, routing conference opponent Earlham College by a score of 13-5. The Beavers let an early 6-0 lead shrink to just one, but added six more tallies on in the sixth en route to the victory.
Senior Miles Richardson (Granville/Newark Catholic) got the start on the mound for Bluffton and kept the Quakers off the scoreboard until the fifth inning while the Beavers built a six-run lead. Outside of that one frame, he kept the Earlham hitters off-balance to earn his third win of the season. Richardson (3-1) finished the game with six innings pitched, allowing seven hits and five runs while striking out seven.
Sophomores Brad Schlabach (Fredericksburg/Hiland) and Nate Simonds (Ypsilanti, Mich./Lincoln) combined for three scoreless innings of relief to preserve the win.
Bluffton entered the scoring column in the bottom of the second thanks to back-to-back hits to lead off the inning. It started with a single by T.J. Devore (Grove City) and an RBI triple for David Ianiro (Highland Heights/Mayfield). Ianiro then scored on an Earlham balk. Rounding out the scoring for the inning was Jeff Roth (Bellevue) who came around following an error on the Quaker third baseman.
The Beavers added on another run in the next inning thanks to an RBI double by Jake Townley (Mansfield/Madison).
In the bottom of the fourth Bluffton came up with a couple more runs, which all started with a one-out single by Richardson. Anthony Cianci (Ravenna/Southeast) followed up that hit with an RBI double to push the lead to five. Tim Webb (Delaware/Worthington Christian) rounded out the scoring for the inning with an RBI single which plated Cianci.
After allowing five runs to Earlham in the top of the fifth, Bluffton responded, and in a big way one frame later. Following a single by Cianci which put runners on first and second with one out, Kyle Niermann (Napoleon) smashed an RBI ground-rule double to right-center, plating Roth. Webb followed up Niermann with a double of his own for two more runs. With two outs in the inning, Ianiro ripped an RBI single to make it a four-run game. Townley put the exclamation mark on the inning with a two-run bomb to left field, making the score 12-5.
The Beavers added on one more insurance run in the seventh thanks to Richardson, who crushed a 1-1 pitch by the Quaker reliever over the fence in center field for a home run.
Leading the offensive attack for Bluffton was Richardson, who helped himself with three hits in the win. Webb and Townley had two hits and three RBI apiece, while Ianiro, Cianci, and Niermann each chipped in a couple hits.
Following the win, Bluffton improved to 14-12 overall with a 5-6 mark in the HCAC, while Earlham fell to 6-19 on the season and 2-9 in conference play. The Beavers are back in action this Friday when they take to the road to face conference opponent Mount St. Joseph in the first three-game set away from Memorial Field this season. That Friday night game is scheduled to begin at 6 p.m. at Marge Schott Stadium on the campus of the University of Cincinnati.