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Baseball Powers Its Way to Sweep of Lakeland

Ted Howell was one of three Scarlet Hawks who homered in game one (photo credit: Judith Rackow)
Ted Howell was one of three Scarlet Hawks who homered in game one (photo credit: Judith Rackow)

CHICAGO, Ill. – The Illinois Tech baseball team entered Monday in a tie with Lakeland University for the sixth and final spot in the Northern Athletics Collegiate Conference (NACC) standings. After Monday's games, Tech now hold a two-game lead on the spot, as the Scarlet Hawks (15-17, 7-9 NACC) defeated the Muskies (5-22, 5-11) 11-5 and 12-10.

Game One: Runs-Hits-Errors

  • Lakeland: 5 runs, 11 hits, 1 error
  • Tech: 11 runs, 13 hits, 6 errors

Game One: How it Happened

  • After Ian Duke stranded two Muskie runners in the first, the home run was a massive weapon for the Tech offense. Michael Courtney homered on the first pitch of the inning before Zachary Dickey hit a solo shot of his own two batters later. After a Brandon Bennitt walk, Ted Howell hit Tech's third dinger of the inning to give the Scarlet Hawks a 4-0 lead.
  • Lakeland was able to tack on a run in the third before the Scarlet Hawk struck back with one in the bottom of the frame.
  • After the Muskies scored once in the fourth, Jacob Geiger came on and was stellar in relief, throwing four straight scoreless innings.
  • In the seventh, the Scarlet Hawks added two more runs of insurance. Jacob Sorenson had a big two-out single to drive in the inning's last run.
  • It was Claudio LoBracio who doubled in a run in the eight, smoking a ball down the right field line to make it an 8-2 score. One batter later, Bledsoe singled him in for another run. This set the stage for Howell, who hit his second two-run homer of the game.
  • The Muskies would make some noise in the ninth thanks to a three-run homer from Nathan Hemmerling, but it was too little, too late for the visitors.

Game One: Scarlet Hawk Standouts

  • Howell was 2-for-4 with the two home runs and four RBI.
  • Courtney had three hits at the top of the order, including a home run, a double, and a stolen base.
  • Dickey, Bledsoe, and Sorenson all had two hits. Dickey's line had a home run to his credit, while Bledsoe and Sorenson stole bases.
  • Geiger was stellar in relief, tossing five innings of three-run ball to get the win.

Game Two: Runs-Hits-Errors

  • Lakeland: 10 runs, 10 hits, 2 errors
  • Tech: 12 runs, 12 hits, 2 errors

Game Two: How it Happened

  • Tech found themselves down 5-0 after the top of the first, but the Scarlet Hawk offense responded right away. With the bases loaded and one out, Courtney smacked a single to right to plate two runs. Howell followed with an RBI groundout on a sharply hit ball to third base.
  • In the second, the Scarlet Hawks got back more. Orlando Cardenas-Juan knocked in a run on a bloop single before a Bledsoe sacrifice fly tied the score. Then, Peter Upham stepped to the plate and hit a go-ahead double off the right field fence before narrowly missing a home run down the right field line one pitch earlier.
  • The runs kept coming for the Scarlet Hawks. In the third, Brandon Holifield walked with the bases loaded before Cardenas-Juan hit a sacrifice fly on a diving play by the centerfielder. The runs offset a Muskie homer in the top of the frame as Tech led 8-6 after three.
  • Called upon early in relief, Alex Riehman was outstanding for Tech. The freshman went six innings strong and allowed just the Lakeland solo homer in the third.
  • Tech added three more runs in the sixth, as Courtney singled in two runs before Sorenson drove him home later on in the inning.
  • After a Lakeland two-run homer in the seventh to bring the score to 11-7, Sorenson drove in another run on a sacrifice fly in the bottom of the eighth.
  • Lakeland would rally late, but Bennitt entered to earn the save.

Scarlet Hawk Standouts: Game Two

  • Courtney was awesome, going 4-for-5 in this one with four RBI, a run scored, and a stolen base.
  • Cardenas-Juan had three hits, three runs, a stolen base, and two RBI of his own.
  • Peter Upham (two doubles, RBI) and Sorenson (two RBI, stolen base) each had multi-hit games.
  • Riehman's relief line was six innings of one run ball with seven strikeouts, one walk, and four hits allowed.

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