MISHAWAKA, Ind. — The Goshen College baseball team squared off with Crossroads League rival Bethel College last Thursday and came away victorious, sweeping the doubleheader by 3-1 and 8-5 margins at the Pilots’ Jenkins Stadium.
Travis Grimm, a senior, started on the mound for the Maple Leafs in game one hurling a seven inning gem, allowing just two hits and one earned run. Goshen scored first in the first inning off a solo home run from Ben Longacre, a sophomore, to take a 1-0 lead after one inning.
Pitching from both sides was strong in the middle innings as neither Goshen nor Bethel scored until the fifth inning.
In the fifth inning, Bethel evened up the score by plating one run on two hits and no errors to make the score 1-1 after the said frame. Scoreless action through the ensuing two innings of play forced the contest into free baseball.
Goshen took the lead quickly in the top of the eighth as Chase Hunter, a first-year, doubled to bring in Cody McCoy, a senior, and Kody McGuire, a sophomore, to secure a 3-1 advantage. Leaf closer and GC’s all-time leading saves man Colby Malson, a sophomore, took the mound in the bottom of the eighth to do what he does best and shut the door to secure a save and a victory for the visiting Maple Leafs. Grimm was credited with the win, boosting his season record to 6-1.
Game two of the twinbill provided more offensive firepower as the Pilots jumped on Goshen starting pitcher Chandler Ingle, a senior, quickly by scoring two runs in the bottom of the first. The Leafs, however, answered back soon thereafter in the top of the third inning by scoring three runs, two of which came once again from the power bat of Longacre whose homer scored himself and Brad Stoltzfus, a senior. The third run came by way of a double from Malson, scoring runner Ryan Hartig, a senior. In the bottom of the third, Bethel scored one run to tie the game up 3-3.
The Maple Leafs scored again in the top of the fifth as the men in purple scored two runs on two hits and no errors. Those two runs put the Leafs up by one but the Pilots evened the score in the bottom of the fifth at five runs a side.
The top of the sixth inning was when Goshen made a final push to take the lead 8-5, registering three runs on two hits and one Bethel error. Goshen was able to hold off the Pilots in the bottom of the sixth and seventh to go on and win the game 8-5. Colton Daniel, a sophomore, picked up the win in relief while Malson finished the contest to pick up his second save on the day.
Goshen returned to action at home this Tuesday, falling 8-5 to visiting CL opponent Marian University. The Leafs look to bounce back quickly as they are set to play ten games in the next eight calendar days beginning Wednesday as they finish their three-game set against Bethel (game completed after print deadline).