By Nicholas Huenefeld/Owens Sports Information
New Carlisle, Ohio---The Owens Community College baseball team scored 24 runs en route to a sweep of Clark State Community College in a doubleheader this afternoon at Gastineau Field.
With the victories, Owens is now 13-5 overall. They will be back in action on Tuesday with a doubleheader at Concordia University beginning at 2 p.m.
Game 1: Owens 11 Clark State 4
Michael Finch (Norwalk/Norwalk, Ohio) provided a dominant nine strikeout effort out of the bullpen, while the Owens offense exploded for 11 runs in today's first game.
Things got started offensively for Owens when Devin Dubbert (Perkins/Sandusky, Ohio) produced an RBI single in the first inning. Eric Hotchkiss (Bedford/Lambertville, Mich.) and Riley Bennett (Howell/Howell, Mich.) followed with RBI singles of their own, while Ian Bach (Covington/Union, KY) scored on an error and Zach Souter (Huron/Huron, Ohio) scored on a wild pitch to give Owens a 5-0 lead through one.
Jake Schmeltz (Eastwood/Perrysburg, Ohio) added another run in the second when he singled on a bunt, stole second, advanced to third on a wild pitch and scored on another wild pitch.
Ty Suntken (Wauseon/Wauseon, Ohio) started on the mound for Owens, and he was dominant through the first two innings before running into trouble in the third inning when Clark State produced a three-run double and an RBI single with two outs to pull within two through three.
Offensively, Owens answered in the next half inning with a pair of runs. An RBI single from Dubbert scored the first run. Later in the inning, Souter scored on a wild pitch to give Owens an 8-4 lead.
Jake Wichlacz (Eisenhower/Macomb, Mich.) then added three insurance runs for Owens with a two-run single in the fifth and an RBI groundout in the seventh.
Meanwhile, Finch replaced Suntken on the mound to begin the fourth. He struck out the side in the fourth and seventh innings, and he allowed just two baserunners over four innings of work.
Offensively, Souter (2-for-2, two runs), Dubbert (3-for-5, R, 2 RBI), Hotchkiss (2-for-5, R, RBI) and Bennett (2-for-4, RBI) each had multi-hit games, while Casey Gose (Genoa/Genoa, Ohio), Wichlacz and Souter each had multi-run games. Wichlacz led the team with three RBI, and he also walked twice. Gose had two stolen bases, as well.
Suntken's final line included three innings, five hits, four runs, two walks and six strikeouts. Finch (3-0) picked up the win as he struck out nine, while allowing just one hit and walking one in four innings. The duo struck out 15 of the 21 outs in the game.
Jimmy Pelphrey took the loss for Clark State. He went the first two innings before Ben Wiley replaced him for the final five innings.
Game 2: Owens 13 Clark State 0 (5 Innings)
Owens scored 13 runs combined in the third and fourth innings en route to an easy win in the second game.
While his offense was scoring plenty of runs in support, Grant Peters (Eastwood/Pemberville, Ohio) was dominant on the mound. The sophomore righty allowed just one hit - a bloop single - in the fifth inning, and he improved to 2-1 with the win. He walked three batters, but also struck out three.
In the third, Owens put across five runs. Suntken roped a two-run double to left center to start the scoring. Wichlacz followed with an RBI fielder's choice in which Clark State's shortstop failed to get Schmeltz out at home, and Nick Wolfe (Genoa/Genoa, Ohio) closed the scoring with a two-run single up the middle.
In the fourth, Gose reached on an error and later came around to score on a wild pitch for the first of eight runs. Wolfe added an RBI groundout with the bases loaded, Bennett added an RBI single, and Stephen Parker (Eisenhower/Shelby Township, Mich.) followed with a bases loaded walk.
With his team up 9-0 and the bases loaded, Gose smashed a three-run double to right center to push the lead to double figures. The final run was scored by Gose on a fielding error with the bases loaded.
Schmeltz (3-for-3, 2 R, 4 SB) and Gose (2-for-4, 3 R, 3 RBI) led the Owens offense as the lone two players with multi-hit games. Wolfe tied Gose for the team-high with three RBI, while Suntken went 1-for-2 with two runs, two RBI, two walks and a stolen base. Wichlacz joined Parker, Gose, Schmeltz and Suntken with multi-run games. Devin Burns (Springfield/Holland, Ohio) went 1-for-1 with a run and two walks.
Clark State used three pitchers in the game with starter Pat Orr taking the loss. He went the first three plus innings and allowed six hits, nine runs (seven earned) and four walks.
Gose increased his team-high run total to 31 this year. He also leads the team in hits (24) and stolen bases (13).
Wichlacz took over the team lead in RBI today, and he now has 21 this year.
Among regulars, Souter leads the team with a .432 batting average, although six others are also hitting .300 or above.
Defensively, Owens turned a pair of double plays on the day, and Connor Bowen (Lake/Northwood, Ohio) made a few nice defensive plays at first base in the second game.