Berea, KY- The baseball team returned to their home field at the Berea College Sports Complex this afternoon as they welcomed NCAA Division III opponent the Alma College Scots. The teams played two games of a three-game series today.
Two runs in the second inning by the Scots broke a scoreless tie as the first game began. Berea came to the plate in the bottom of the third inning trailing 3-0 before putting their first run on the board. Ryan Blevens' double followed by a passed ball by the catcher put Blevens into scoring position as Nicholas Bottom came to the plate. Bottom reached base via an error, scoring Blevens to make the score 3-1. Bottom stole second to put himself in scoring position but was left on base as the next two batters recorded outs. Alma's lead was cut to one in the fourth inning as Josh Durbin crossed home plate after reaching base on a hit by pitch as Joshua Works' RBI single made the score 3-2.
The teams exchanged runs in the fifth inning as a similar set of plays earlier in the game occurred in the fifth to help the Mountaineers score. Blevens doubled and moved to third off a passed ball before scoring a run off of Bottom's sacrifice fly, picking up his second RBI of the game and making the score 4-3. Berea took the final lead of the game in the bottom of the sixth, as Caleb Gupton began the inning with a single. William Hislope's single moved Gupton to second before the bases became loaded with Joshua Works' walk. A sacrifice fly by Josh Wilson tied the game at four as Gupton crossed home plate before a Blevens single, his third hit of the game, scored the go-ahead run, completing Hislope's trip around the bases. The scoreboard read 5-4 in favor of the Mountaineers as the teams went to the seventh inning. Berea held the Scots offense in check in the final inning, winning the first game of the double header. Blevens finished a perfect 3-3 from the plate and added a RBI to his stat line. Wilson, Gupton, Joshua Durbin, Hislope and Works added a hit for the Mountaineers, totaling eight hits for the game. Matthew Wilburn started on the mound for Berea but Michael Smither gets credit for the win while Tyler Pope left the contest with his second save of the season.
A three-up and three-down first inning for both teams brought the teams to the second inning, looking to get an advantage. The race for the first run was won by the Mountaineers as Ron Overstreet reaching base on a passed ball was followed by an Andrew Akins single. A ground out by the next batter put both Overstreet and Akins in scoring position before a ground out by Nathan Summey resulted in an RBI, scoring Overstreet for a 1-0 lead. Berea struck again in the third inning as an error allowed Works to get to third base. Wilson's RBI single pushed the Mountaineers ahead 2-0 as Works crossed home plate. Alma cut the lead in half in the fourth inning with a run but seven strikeouts from starting pitcher Griffen Norris along with strong team defense from Berea helped the team walk off the field with a 2-1 win, sweeping the doubleheader.
Norris pitched five innings in the game, giving up four hits and one earned run while striking out seven batters, gaining his first win of the season. Durbin earned his first save of the season, pitching two innings and giving up one hit. The bats for the Mountaineers combined for six hits, with two of the hits coming from Wilson in three attempts, to go along with one hit each from Blevens, Bottom, Akins and Summey. Wilson and Summey each finished with a RBI.
The conclusion of the three-game series will be played at the Berea College Sports Complex as the team goes for their sixth win of the season. First pitch is scheduled for 11:00 AM.