Northern Kentucky defeated the Dayton Flyers 4-3 in extras Wednesday at Bill Aker Baseball Complex. Head coach Todd Asalon was much more pleased with his team’s performance compared to yesterday’s game.
“Our bullpen really won us this game. Charlie Jerger really showed out today.” Says Asalon.
Jerger pitched nearly 5.2 innings of shutout baseball with 2 strikeouts after starter Matt Ianni and reliever Pierce Knisley allowed 3 runs in the first two innings.
The Flyers didn’t have to work very hard to find their way on the board first, as the first two runs of the game for Dayton were from Ianni walks in the second inning. Pierce Knisley replaced Ianni in the midst of the inning, and allowed a sacrifice fly by Aaron Huesman to let another run cross the plate, making it a 3-0 ball game.
Dayton had the bases loaded early in the third but a double play by catcher Logan Spurlin prevented the Flyers from extending their lead. A line drive to new pitcher Charlie Jerger, who entered in the middle of the third inning, made a fielder’s choice throw to home, stopping the incoming runner from scoring. Spurlin then looked to make the out at first with a quick snap to first baseman Trey Ganns to sneak their way out of the inning.
The Norse finally came alive late in the sixth, when Ledger reached first after an error by Dayton shortstop Nick Ryan. Spurlin then began a two-out rally with a double which allowed Ledger to score all the way from first. The action continued when a hit by Ganns passed diving second baseman Cale Dineen, allowing Spurlin to cross the plate. Norse still trailed the Flyers 3-2.
Reliever Aric Harris and the Norse defense then kept the Flyers scoreless in the ninth.
A base hit to center field from Trey Ganns began the hopes of a comeback for the Norse, followed with a sacrifice bunt from Ty Amann to advance him to second. Will Hauter followed with a base hit to center field, but the quick Tito Montgomery subbed in as a pinch runner. Pinch hitter Quint Heady hit a sacrifice fly to deep center field that allowed the tying run to score of the game and sent the game to extra innings.
The tenth inning remained scoreless, and the Norse sent Alex Bolia to the mound to replace Harris. Bolia held the Flyers scoreless with a three up three down inning, giving Northern Kentucky a chance to seal the deal.
Two walks put the Norse in scoring position. Colletta then executed a flawless sacrifice bunt, allowing both runners to advance. Vagnier stepped up to the plate and singled up the middle, where a fielders choice play was made, trying to get Montgomery out at third, but Robbie Doring missed the tag. He then tried to get Vagnier out at first but overthrew first baseman Nick Weybright, which allowed Montgomery to cross home and put the game away for the Norse .
The Norse return to action on Friday against Oakland University in Rochester Michigan. First pitch is set for noon.