By Nicholas Huenefeld/Owens Sports Information
Ashland, OH---The Express got a nice pitching performance from Scott Robinson to help them split a pair against Ashland University's JV team on Saturday.
Game 1: Ashland 9 Owens 1
The Express couldn't find much offense against Ashland starter Joe Malfara, who allowed only one run and four hits while striking out eight in his complete game performance.
Meanwhile, Owens starter Titus Pierce (Eastern/Reedsville, Ohio) struggled with his control in his first loss of the season for the Express. Pierce (0-1) went 2.2 innings while allowing four hits, five walks and five runs (four earned).
Garrett Busch (Start/Toledo, Ohio), Tyler Brown-Lewis (Shaker Heights/Shaker Heights, Ohio), James Moore (Southfield Lathrup/Farmington Hills, Mich.), and Nate Miceli (Berea/Berea, Ohio) each had one hit apiece for Owens.
A sacrifice fly by Matt Hayes (North/Pickerington, Ohio) in the third inning scored Miceli and provided the one run for the Express.
Game 2: Owens 4 Ashland 0
Express starter Scott Robinson (Coventry/Coventry, Ohio) led the Express to a split. The freshman lefty (1-1) dominated while taking a no-hitter into the sixth inning. He finished with six innings pitched, while allowing two hits and four walks. He struck out six.
Blake Schmenk (Perrysburg/Perrysburg, Ohio) pitched the final inning for Owens. He allowed one walk and struck out two during his stint.
Both teams were held scoreless until the fourth inning when Joe Sickler (Bowling Green/Bowling Green, Ohio) led off with a double to deep left field. The bases were loaded a few batters later when Brown-Lewis drew a walk to put Owens up 1-0.
Owens added two more in the fifth inning when Sickler once again doubled while driving in Danny Schira (Switzerland County/Vevay, Ind.), who had laid down a bunt single down the third base line to begin the rally.
A few batters later, with Sickler on third and Jesse Solomon (Wayne/Huber Heights, Ohio) on first, the Express pulled off a delayed double steal in which Solomon stole second and Sickler then easily slid home to give the Express a 3-0 lead.
Schira scored his second and the team's final run in the sixth inning on a double by Michael Louis (Normandy/Parma, Ohio).
Sickler finished the game 2-for-4 with two runs, an RBI and a stolen base. Ashland starter Shayne Herold allowed five hits, three runs, and one walk in five innings while taking the loss. He struck out eight.