By Nicholas Huenefeld/Owens Sports Information
Toledo, OH---The Express swept Macomb CC to end their four game losing streak behind the hitting and pitching of Blake Schmenk.
Game 1: Owens 12 Macomb 2
The Express got a five inning, complete game performance from Titus Pierce (Eastern/Reedsville, Ohio) while the offense scored eight runs in the fourth inning and beyond to bring home the win and snap a four game losing streak.
Ryan Hotmer (Lake/Millbury, Ohio) put Owens on the board in the first with an RBI single to score Blake Schmenk (Perrysburg/Perrysburg, Ohio). Following that, Shane Powell (Gibralter Carlson/Brownstown, Mich.) knocked Hotmer in with a single of his own to put Owens up 2-0.
In the second, Macomb tied the game with two unearned runs off Pierce before Owens answered right back with two more on a two-run home run by Joe Sickler (Bowling Green/Bowling Green, Ohio).
A three run home run by Schmenk put Owens up 7-2 before the Express plated five in the fifth to end it.
Jesse Solomon (Wayne/Huber Heights, Ohio) walked to set up a two run home run from Daniel Heatherly (Trenton/Trenton, Mich.) before Danny Schira (Switzerland County/Vevay, Ind.) singled, advanced to second on a wild pitch, stole third and scored on an error by the catcher to make it 10-2.
Austin Gunn (Delta/Delta, Ohio) then walked before Sickler knocked him home with a triple to make it 11-2. Following that, pinch hitter James Moore (Southfield Lathrup/Farmington Hills, Mich.) ended the game with a walk off RBI single scoring Sickler.
On the mound, Pierce allowed only two hits and three walks in his five innings. He also struck out six batters.
Sickler went 2-for-3 with a triple and a homer. He added three RBIs and three runs. Schmenk went 2-for-4 with a double, a homer, two runs, and three RBIs.
Game 2: Owens 10 Macomb 5
The Express offense once again performed well, while Schmenk picked up the win on the mound with nine strikeouts over four innings. Overall, the team struck out 14 Macomb pitchers in the game.
Sickler singled, stole second and scored on a fielder's choice in the first inning to put the Express up 1-0. In the second, Schira walked and scored on an RBI double by Moore for the second run. Moore later scored on an RBI single by Michael Louis (Normandy/Parma, Ohio).
Macomb then scored three runs in the third inning to tie the game before Owens answered back with an RBI groundout by Louis that scored Solomon and made the score 4-3. However, Macomb came right back in the fourth with an unearned run to tie it back up once again.
That was then the Express sent eleven batters to the plate in the fourth while scoring five runs to essentially put the game away. Sickler led off with a hit by pitch before Schmenk singled. Busch then pushed a bunt single down the first base line to load the bases.
Heatherly then singled to score Sickler and keep the bases loaded and make it 5-4. A double to right center by Solomon scored two more before Schira singled in another. Louis then capped the inning's scoring with a sacrifice fly.
Macomb scored another run in the fifth to pull within 9-5 before Heatherly singled in the sixth, advanced to second when Solomon was hit by a pitch and later scored on a wild pitch to cap the day's scoring at 10-5.
Heatherly finished 2-for-4 with two runs and an RBI, Solomon went 2-for-3 with two runs, a stolen base and two RBIs, and Schira went 1-for-1 with three walks, a stolen base and a run scored.
Schmenk, who allowed two runs while striking out nine, allowed five hits and two walks to pick up the win. Following his exit, Owens used reliever by committee as Jordan Basinger (Kalida/Kalida, Ohio) pitched the fifth, Zak Esposito (Sandusky/Sandusky, Ohio) pitched the sixth, and Kelley Wagner (Brownstown/Brownstown, Ind.) pitched the seventh.
Of the three, only Basinger allowed a run. Esposito touched 91 on the radar gun while striking out two in his frame, and Wagner also struck out two in the seventh.