Section: Baseball

Baseball splits six critical conference games

Baseball splits six critical conference games

Andrew Rabinowitz ’22 frames the pitch against DePauw University. The Lords split the doubleheader with the Tigers. | COURTESY OF KENYON COLLEGE ATHLETICS

Kenyon added three wins and three losses to their record, including a sweep of Hiram College, a split series with DePauw University and two losses to Denison University.

This week-long stretch moves the Lords to 18-11 overall and 5-5 in the North Coast Athletic Conference (NCAC). Matt Contreras ’19 came in the clutch this week, with two of the Lords’ three wins coming from his extra-inning walk-off home runs.

The Lords came out flat in their first game against the Hiram Terriers, falling in a 4-0 hole after three innings, but Kenyon’s Patrick O’Leary’s ’20 seventh home run of the season finally got the Lords on the board in the bottom of the fourth.

It was not until the sixth inning that Kenyon scored again with a single from Eric DelRosso ’20, which brought Contreras home. The Lords headed into the ninth inning trailing Hiram 5-2.

In the ninth, the Lord’s offense erupted: Andrew Rabinowitz ’22 and Will Sturgeon ’22 got on base and scored on a Ryan Page ’21 double. With two outs and a runner on second, Alex Gow ’21 hit a single that scored Page and forced extra innings, which concluded in the Contreras game-winner.

Kenyon carried their momentum into the second game and overpowered the Terriers with five home runs. In the fourth inning alone, Kenyon had four runs and led 14-4. In the fifth, Gow recorded Kenyon’s fifth home run of the day and secured their second win in a 17-7 conclusion. 

In Kenyon’s second series against DePauw University’s Tigers, Conteras and Gow again played very well. In the first game, Gow pitched phenomenally, allowing only three hits in six innings with five strikeouts. However, the game was a pitcher’s duel as DePauw’s Grant Rademacher pitched eight innings and struck out 13, assuring DePauw’s uninspiring 2-0 win over the Lords. 

As with their first game against Hiram, the Lords stumbled out of the gates in their second game against the Tigers. DePauw’s offense was locked in, and the Tigers led 6-0 in the top of the fourth. In the bottom of the inning, O’Leary brought the Lords back with a three-run home run, his eighth of the season. By the end of the sixth inning, Kenyon trailed 7-4 but quickly tied the game up. Rabinowitz and Page both had massive at-bats, bringing Brent Henderson ’22, Zach Frizzera ’22 and Sturgeon home to tie the game 7-7.

Kenyon relief pitcher Nathan Chandler ’20 took the mound in the seventh inning and allowed just two hits in the next six innings. With one out in the bottom of the 12th, O’Leary was hit by a pitch. Contreras then stepped in and ended the game with his fifth home run of the season.

In their doubleheader at No. 8-ranked Denison, Kenyon took early leads twice but fell in late-inning turnarounds. In the first game, Kenyon held an assertive position until the seventh inning, when the Denison’s Brian McAuliffe hit a back-breaking three-run home run. Denison held position from then on, with great work from relief pitchers John Troll and Mikey Rivera, to win 7-4.

Game two provided more back-and-forth excitement as DelRosso and Page secured a two-run lead in the top of the fifth with a 9-7 advantage. Denison, however, quickly bounced back and scored four in the bottom of the fifth, and ultimately went on to win the game, 12-9.

Kenyon looks to turn around their divisional play in their two-game series against Wittenberg University this weekend in Springfield, Ohio, at 12 p.m. and 3 p.m.

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