Baseball takes three of four

A three-run eighth inning rally pushed the Northern Kentucky University Baseball team to a 5-2 victory in Game 2 of a April 19 doubleheader, as the Norse took three games of a four-game series against Lewis University April 18-19 and dropped into a tie for the lead in the Great Lakes Valley Conference East Division with Bellarmine University.’

The Norse and the Knights each have a 14-6 record in the GLVC East Division but NKU owns the head-to-head tiebreaker over the Knights after taking three-of-four from BU on April 4-5.

In the latter contest of the April 19 meeting, NKU (26-18, 14-10 GLVC) trailed the Flyers (16-24, 4-15 GLVC) 1-0 after the top of the first inning but plated two runs in the bottom of the frame as senior outfielder Kevin Dusold smacked a two-run homer over the left field fence.’ The home run was Dusold’s eighth of the season.

After Lewis knotted the score up at two-all in the top of the fifth, the score would stay that way until NKU’s big three-run inning in the bottom of the eighth.

With two outs in the inning and freshman Max Colaner pinch running for junior infielder Jeff Bohlen at second base, sophomore catcher Brian Erie sent the 1-1 pitch through the right side of the infield to score Colaner.’ Erie would then steal his first base of the season before being brought home on a freshman infielder Jake Morris RBI-single through the left side of the infield with Morris advancing to second on the throw home.

Junior outfielder Jason Cisper’s RBI-double scored Morris from second base for the final margin.

‘Brian Erie was clutch today when we needed him the most,’ said NKU Head Coach Todd Asalon.’ ‘The pitcher gave him something out over the plate and he hit to the perfect spot.’

Erie added, ‘I just sat back and made sure that the inning didn’t end on my at-bat.’ It definitely felt good to see the ball go through the infield and knowing how fast Max is, I knew we had just taken the lead.’

Junior left-hander Jay Hale (2-1) picked up the win in relief of fellow junior southpaw Ryan Schmidt, who had pitched the first six innings allowing two runs with one earned run on seven hits and two walks while striking out eight Flyer batters.’ Senior righthander Matt Winterhalter picked up his fifth save of the season after tossing a scoreless ninth inning.

‘When I came out of the game and the score was tied two-all, I knew I had kept us in a good spot to potentially win the game,’ Schmidt said.’ ‘Jay came in and pitched well after me to give our bats some time to finally put some runs on the board.’

Lewis won the first game of the April 19 doubleheader 9-5 to avoid the series sweep after the Norse took a 5-1 lead into the fifth inning as the Flyers scored four in the fifth and another three in the sixth for a 9-5 lead.’

NKU’s ninth inning rally fell short as the Norse could only score two runs and losing by a 9-7 margin.

NKU will now set its sights on a couple of non-conference doubleheaders during the upcoming week before closing out the GLVC East portion of its schedule at Kentucky Wesleyan College on April 25-26.’ The Norse will travel to Urbana University on April 21, before hosting Kentucky State University April 22.