Baseball Hosts Bluffton in HCAC Action on Tuesday

Baseball Hosts Bluffton in HCAC Action on Tuesday

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RICHMOND, Indiana – The Earlham College baseball team hosts Bluffton University for a single Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference (HCAC) contest at Randal R. Sadler Stadium on Tuesday. First pitch is slated for 4:15 p.m.

The Teams: Earlham and Bluffton. The Quakers are 7-5 this season and 2-1 in conference play after winning a three-game series at Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology this past weekend. The Beavers are 9-4 overall and 2-1 in the HCAC after winning a series over Anderson University.

The Coaches: Steve Sakosits is in his seventh season leading the Earlham baseball program. A coach of 38 All-HCAC honorees, Sakosits is the program's all-time leader in career victories and has led the Quakers to the HCAC Tournament the past two seasons. James Grandey is in his 14th season leading the Bluffton baseball program. 

Hitters to Watch: Senior Eric Elkus leads the team in home runs (four) and RBIs (28) while also holding a .392 batting average. Freshman Danny Dopp leads the squad with a .460 batting average to go along with 21 RBIs. Seniors Nate Lynch and Brennan Laird have combined for 29 stolen bases. Blake Fox and Luke Hickey both boast over .400 averages and have each driven in at least ten runs.

Pitchers to Watch: Sophomore Walter Talcott, who started his first game of the season against Wilmington on March 18, has a perfect ERA in 5.2 innings pitched to go along with nine strikeouts. Senior Howie Smith and freshman Jordan Christian, who both earned wins at Rose-Hulman, have ERAs of 4.81 and 450 respectively. Freshman Spencer Owen has a 2.25 ERA in four innings pitch out of the Quakers' bullpen. Dyson Bowman is the lone Beaver to have two wins this season, doing so in 17.2 innings pitched and a team-high 29 strikeouts.

Recent History: Earlham is 5-8 against Bluffton since joining the HCAC prior to the 2011 season. The Quakers have won the last five meetings, however.

Leading the HCAC: Eric Elkus and Danny Dopp are first and second respectively in the HCAC in RBIs while Nate Lynch leads the conference in stolen bases.

Chasing Program Records: Eric Elkus has 107 career RBIs and 20 career home runs. The Edgewood, Kentucky, native is six RBIs and six home runs away from setting career program bests in each category. Additionally, Nate Lynch has 59 stolen bases and is five away from setting the program's career mark.

Coverage: Live statistics and live video of the game will be available – visit the links above.

Up Next: Earlham continues HCAC play by hosting Franklin College for a three-game series at Sadler Stadium this weekend.