MISHAWAKA, Ind. – The Forester baseball team put up big numbers in their opener against Bethel College on Tuesday afternoon to run away with a 20-8 win before cruising to a 6-3 victory in the nightcap at Jenkins Baseball Stadium.
Huntington unloaded for 15 runs in the final three innings of the first contest on their way posting the program’s most runs in a single game since March of 2009 when the Foresters smoked Olivet Nazarene University 20-1.
Holding onto a slight 5-4 advantage through the first four innings, HU pounded out 16 hits over the last three innings to blow the game wide open. The final frame proved to be the most productive as Huntington scored seven runs in their final at-bats with Dustin Rutledge capping things off with an RBI double.
Ten of the 13 Foresters who stepped up to the plate drove in at least one run with Dylan Henricks, Dalton Combs and Michael Crowley each tallying three RBI. HU finished with 21 hits, sifting through five Pilot pitchers along the way. Blake Ayers posted four hits, two for extra bases, while Henricks and Shea Beauchamp hammered out three hits apiece.
John Ripke (3-1) went the distance in the circle to pick up the win by scattering 14 hits and allowing eight runs and one walk while striking out one.
The Pilots outhit the Foresters 7-6 in the nightcap but three Bethel errors haunted the hosts as two of HU’s six runs were of the unearned variety.
The Foresters managed only one hit through the first three innings to which Bethel took full advantage, jumping out to an early 2-0 lead before HU finally got rolling in the fourth. After a misplayed grounder allowed Henricks to get on base to open the frame, Beauchamp doubled to left setting up Andy Roser’s grounder that allowed Henricks to scurry home.
The Pilots matched that in their half of the frame to keep their distance at 3-1 but HU was just heating up as they unloaded for four runs in the fifth to take command of the contest. Henricks knocked in HU’s first run of the inning and then eventually came around to score on a wild pitch.
Roser logged his second RBI of the contest on a fielder’s choice and then he too touched home several batters later when Jordan Ham drew a walk with bases loaded.
Henricks paced HU offensively by tacking on an insurance run in the sixth with his second run-scoring single of the contest to wrap up the game’s scoring.
Starting pitcher Blake Hohlbein picked up the win for the Foresters. In four innings on the mound, he gave up five hits, three runs and two walks while striking out three. Senior Marc Bowers tossed the final three innings to pick up the save as he held the Pilots scoreless the rest of the way.
The Foresters (13-17, 7-9) are back at the friendly confine of Forest Glen Park on Thursday to host Bethel College at 4:30 p.m.