By Nicholas Huenefeld/Owens Sports Information
Toledo, OH---The Express baseball team defeated Mercyhurst North East 4-3 in extra innings in game one, but were one-hit in the second game as they split a doubleheader at home.
Game 1: Owens 4 Mercyhurst NE 3 (8 innings)
Juday got off to a rough start as he allowed three hits and two runs in the first innings. Then, after allowing an unearned run in the second, he settled into a comfort zone. In all, he allowed seven hits, three runs (two earned) and one walk while striking out four.
After Juday allowed his two first inning runs, the Express tied it in the bottom half. Nate Manis singled and stole second before Clayton Ruch walked and Ryan Hotmer reached on catcher's interference to load the bases.
Myles Debol then flew out to right field. Manis, who was holding at third on the play, would end up scoring on the play thanks to a throwing error by Mercyhurst's right fielder. James Moore Jr. then had an RBI groundout to tie the game.
Down 3-2 in the fifth, Hotmer lined an RBI single down the right field line to score Michael Louis, who had singled, stole second and advanced to third on a groundout.
Dane Davis relieved Juday in the eighth and retired the side in order to set up Shullick's game winner.
Myles Debol had a hustle double to lead off the eighth inning rally. After Daniel Heatherly came in to pinch run for him, Moore attempted a sacrifice bunt, but reached on an error Following an intentional walk to load the bases, Shullick finished the game.
Shullick, Moore and Hotmer each picked up RBIs in the game, while six different players each got one hit. Debol had the only extra base hit for Owens.
Davis moved to 4-1 with the win in relief, while Mercyhurst's Tyler Fisher took the loss.
Game 2: Mercyhurst 4 Owens 0
Not much went right for the Express in the second game as Eric Schell threw a complete game, one-hitter for Mercyhurst.
Schell's final line included one hit, two walks and three strikeouts.
Hotmer started on the mound for Owens and allowed three hits, three runs and three walks over the first three innings. He was credited with the loss - his first this season.
Four relievers pitched one inning in relief of Hotmer. Adam Jones allowed one hit in the fourth, Jeff Davis had a 1-2-3 fifth, Aaron Peoples allowed one hit and one unearned run in the sixth and Sean Koerber allowed one hit in the seventh.
Ruch got the only Express hit in the fourth inning, which happened to be the inning in which the Express had their best scoring opportunity. With two outs, Debol and Moore walked prior to the single by Ruch that loaded the bases. Shullick, however, flew out to left to end the threat.
The Express are now 13-22 overall and 6-6 in the OCCAC. They will take on OCCAC foe Sinclair Community College at home this Friday and Saturday beginning at 1 p.m. each day. Sinclair took three out of four from Owens on March 24-25 in Dayton.