Tiffin, Ohio – March 20, 2010 – The Heidelberg University baseball team increased its overall record to 12-1 with a doubleheader sweep over Adrian College today, March 20, at Peaceful Valley, the home of ’Berg baseball. Heidelberg opened with a 5-3 win in game one and followed that with a 16-hit outing in a 9-1 victory. The two wins at home, coupled with a 13-9 victory last night in Adrian, Mich., gave the Berg a three-game series sweep of the Bulldogs, who now stand at 4-5 overall.
The series victory avenges a setback to Adrian in each of the last two seasons in an elimination game of the Mideast Regional. Both sides rank among the top not only in its region, but within the nation as well. Earlier this week Heidelberg, under the guidance of veteran head coach Matt Palm, was voted third in the country according to D3baseball.com, while the Bulldogs were 24th.
Heidelberg’s success in the win column was attributed to an all around solid effort. In game one junior right-handed starter Nathan James (Rockport, Ind. / South Spencer) improved to 3-0, throwing 7.1 innings and allowing 10 hits. In the process he walked just one and struck out a career-best nine.
Picking up the win in game two was sophomore right-handed starter Sylvester Nino (Willard, Ohio / Willard). Nino allowed just four hits and tied his career best of six strike outs. The win improves Nino to 2-1 on the year and both his victories have been against nationally ranked opponents. In his first start on the season he helped guide Heidelberg to a 3-1 win over no. 9 Carthage College.
Helping to seal both wins was junior closer Andy Lowe (Fort Wayne, Ind. / Carroll). Lowe picked up his third and fourth save on the year. In game one he went 1.2 innings and struck out two, followed by 2.1 innings of work, two hits allowed and two strike outs in game two. In the last five-straight games Heidelberg’s all-time saves leader has recorded three saves and a victory.
In game one, Heidelberg found the scoreboard first off an RBI single up the middle from Andrew Buelow (Marysville, Mich. / Marysville) in the second inning.
After a scoreless third, Adrian tied the game in the fourth with an RBI ground out by Garrett Green. Heidelberg responded with two in the bottom half of the inning to retake control of the lead, of which it would never relinquish. Scoring in the inning was Alex Monroe (Chagrin Falls, Ohio / Kenston) from an Elvin Willliams (Euclid, Ohio / Euclid) double, and Ricardo Lizcano (Toledo, Ohio / Roy C. Start) had a sacrifice fly to plate Buelow, for the eventual game-wining run.
For the game, Heidelberg had eight hits, while taking advantage of three Adrian miscues. Jason Lash (Strongsville, Ohio / Strongsville) led the way at the plate going 2-for-3 with a walk and a run scored.
Game two had a scoreless 2.1 innings from the first pitch. Heidelberg broke onto the scoreboard with two runs in the second inning. One run came off an RBI infield single from Williams and a second came from Zach Colatruglio (Brunswick, Ohio / Brunswick) crossing home on a pick off play with Williams at first base.
Adrian cut its deficit in half with a run in its next at bat, but the Berg would keep the Bulldogs quiet the remainder of the game. Heidelberg added another run in the fifth, before closing out the game with a two-run seventh and four more runs in the eighth.
Heidelberg’s hitters combined for 16 hits in the win. Eight of Heidelberg’s starting hitters recorded a hit, with seven finishing with multiple. Decker went 3-for-5 with two RBI and a run scored to lead the way. Williams, Gar Keen(Sparta, Ohio / Highland), Willie Brechun (Canton, Ohio / Canton Central Catholic), Lash, Buelow and Colatruglio each had two hits apiece. Lash also knocked in two runs.