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Muhlenberg College

Sunday, March 7, 2010

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baseball pitches, runs to sweep

Softball Swept

The Muhlenberg softball team ran into Division III royalty on its second day in Florida and dropped a pair of games to No. 6 Washington (Mo.), which has made nine straight NCAA Tournament appearances, and Muskingum, which boasts the all-time winningest coach in Division III history and has been in the NCAAs 11 of the last 12 years.

In the first game, the Mules (1-2) took a 3-1 lead in the third on a two-run homer by senior Jenna Van Waalwijk, but the Bears plated seven runs in the fourth to break the game open and went on to win, 10-3.

The Muskingum contest played out like a slow-pitch game through the first four innings before relief pitchers on both sides settled things down. Muhlenberg trailed 5-1 after one inning and 7-3 after two before plating three runs in the third and three more in the fourth to go up 9-7. The Muskies responded with four in the bottom of the fourth to reclaim the lead, 11-9, and that was how it ended.

Muhlenberg managed only one baserunner in the final three innings.

Junior Ashley Brewer hit a solo home run, the fourth of her career, to lead off the third. Sophomore Brittany Blohm hit a two-run, go-ahead single in the fourth, and freshman Angie Sisco also drove in a pair of runs. Freshman Devon Barber had two hits and stole two bases.
Click here for line scores.
Click here for complete stats: Washington | Muskingum

Junior Chris Harper pitched a brilliant three-hitter in the first game, and the Muhlenberg baseball team scored eight runs in the second inning of the second game in an impressive doubleheader sweep of Pitt-Greensburg at Dodgertown Stadium. The Mules took the opener, 5-1, and captured the nightcap, 16-5.

Harper, making his first career start, struck out the side in the first inning and retired the first 10 hitters. He took a
Chris Harper
Harper came into the game with a career total of 12 innings pitched in seven games.
no-hitter into the fifth and lost his shutout bid on a two-out single in the sixth. He allowed only seven baserunners and struck out six in the gem.

Harper got all the offensive support he would need in the first two innings. In the first, junior Joseph DiCecilia drove in senior Dan Fisher with a two-out single to give Muhlenberg an early lead. The second inning saw the Mules plate three runs on a pair of infield hits. Two runs crossed when the Greensburg pitcher threw away Fisher’s infield hit, and Fisher came around to score all the way from second on freshman Taylor Sutton’s roller to third base.

Sophomore Jesse Nusbaum scored the final run in the fifth after singling and stealing his second base. Muhlenberg stole six bases in the game.

The second game featured more aggressive running by the Mules, none more so than in the bottom of the second with the Bobcats up 1-0. The inning started with back-to-back walks to Nusbaum and sophomore Nick Busillo. With junior Bobby Spindler at bat, Muhlenberg played bunt-and-run. Spindler was thrown out at first by the catcher, but the runners never broke stride, with Nusbaum scoring from second and Busillo wheeling around to third.

The exciting play opened the floodgates to an eight-run inning that consisted of only three Mule hits combined with three walks, two hit batters, two wild pitches, two errors and a stolen base. Three runs came in when the UPG right fielder overran freshman Joseph Vila’s single with the bases loaded.

Vila also doubled in two runs in the third and finished 4-for-4 with three runs scored and four RBI in only four innings. Ten different Muhlenberg players contributed to the 16-hit attack, with 11 scoring a run and eight driving in at least one.
Click here for line scores.
Click for complete stats: Game 1 | Game 2

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