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Forester baseball splits with #22 IU Southeast

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NEW ALBANY, Ind. – After suffering a 9-8 loss to #22 IU Southeast Friday afternoon, the Forester baseball team bounced back to enjoy a 3-1 win in the nightcap cut an inning short because of weather.  

Scheduled to be a four-game series with the Grenadiers, Saturday’s games were cancelled because of more inclement weather as HU moves to 2-4 on the year.

Game one had all the makings of a blowout as IU Southeast raced out to a 7-1 lead after three frames but the Foresters made sure that didn’t happen. HU sifted through four pitchers in the final three innings to come within a run of their hosts before their bid for an upset came up short.

Two swings of the bat for Dalton Combs resulted in three HU runs. He opened up the game by clobbering one over the right field fence as the first batter to step up to plate. He later drove in a pair of runs with a single up the middle in the sixth as part of Huntington’s three-run frame.

Mike Crowley accounted for his team’s first run in the sixth when he knocked in Andrew Natividad who had singled to center just a few batters earlier. The senior catcher also played a part in Huntington’s three-run fifth by scoring on Will Coursen-Carr’s RBI-single after logging his second base poke of the day.

Jamar Weaver and Shea Beauchamp each picked up an RBI on a single and groundout respectively in the fifth but their efforts were matched by the Grenadiers in their half of the frame as Logan Barnes and Zach Reboulet logged back-to-back RBI-singles with Reboulet’s smack proving to be the game-winning hit.  

When all the dust had settled, HU headed into the seventh down 9-7. The lead was trimmed to just one when Drew McLochlin scampered home on a wild pitch to set up what could have been a heroic comeback. Unfortunately, the Grenadiers’ pitching came through. With the tying run on third, Gage Rogers picked up the save by working back-to-back strikeouts to preserve his team’s win.

Starting pitcher Tanner Wyse took the loss for the Foresters. He tossed the first three innings and gave up seven hits, seven runs and three walks while striking out four.

Crowley and Combs paced Coach Frame’s crew offensively. Crowley tallied three hits and an RBI while Combs finished with a pair of hits and three RBI as together they accounted for five of their team’s ten hits.

Game two was a different as Dax McLochlin and Mason Shinabery teamed up on the mound to limit their hosts to just one run through six innings of play. McLochlin picked up the win in the circle giving up five hits, one run and a two walks while striking out four through the first 4.2 innings before being relieved by Shinabery who tossed 1.1 innings of scoreless relief for the save.

The Grenadiers tallied two of their five hits in their first at bat to plate their lone run for the early 1-0 advantage. HU was quick to answer in the top of the second compliments of Crowley who sent his first pitch long. It was a two-run blast and his first dinger of the year.

Crowley would add an insurance in the sixth with a sacrifice fly to score Natividad who had reached on a walk and made his way to third on a sacrifice bunt and passed ball before tagging up for HU’s third run.

The seventh inning got started, and included a fourth HU run, but rain brought an abrupt end to the day so the game reverted back to the last full inning played to make for the 3-1 final.

HU finished with six hits by six Foresters.

Huntington’s home opener is slated for Tuesday against Trinity Christian College. Opening pitch is scheduled for 4:00 p.m.

The Huntington University Foresters compete in 17 intercollegiate sports for men and women. In the past decade, Huntington has produced 38 NAIA All-America honors and 254 All-America Scholar Athlete honors. Huntington University is a comprehensive Christian college of the liberal arts offering graduate and undergraduate programs in more than 70 academic concentrations. U.S. News & World Report ranks Huntington among the best colleges in the Midwest.