A two-out five-run rally in the top of the ninth helped the Foresters (9-8) overcome a sloppy defensive effort in their 11-9 win over Hanover College.
HU got on the board first with a run in the first, but the Panthers got hot at the plate scoring five runs in the second and two more in the third to take a commanding 7-2 lead. Through the middle third, the two teams traded a pair of runs, and the Foresters pulled within three at 9-6 with two more runs in the seventh. Both teams were scoreless in the eighth leaving HU with one last opportunity to make a comeback.
After Zach Crooks grounded out to short and Keith Benbow struck out, the game looked to be over for the Foresters when Austan Kas hit a ground ball to shortstop Thomas Hopkins. Hopkins fielded the ball, but helped HU extend the inning by allowing Kas to reach on a wild throw. Michael Dalton singled and then Andy Janzen sent the first pitch over the leftfield fence to tie the score at 9-9. Korey Grow kept things going with a double. Brad Meyer knocked in Grow with another double, and then Jason Rahn singled to plate Meyer for the 11-9 lead.
Grow, who had relieved Eric Randel in the eighth, got Hanover to go down in order in the bottom of the ninth to pick up the win. Grow gave up a hit and a walk and struck on one over the final two innings. There were 10 errors committed in the game, six by HU and four by the Panthers. The Foresters out-hit Hanover 15-9.
"We really played very poorly, probably our worst outing of the season," said Coach Frame. "Even though the kids played poorly, they still played hard and kept at it. To score five runs with two outs in the ninth is a big lift for a young team on the road."