RICHMOND, Indiana – The Earlham College baseball team split a pair of one-run games in a doubleheader with Franklin College on Saturday, winning game one 7-6 and losing game two 5-4 to conclude the Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference (HCAC) series at Randal R. Sadler Stadium.
In the game one win, the Quakers got on the board first as senior Matt Barger singled, stole second base, advanced to third on a Franklin error, and scored on an RBI-groundout from fellow senior Brennan Laird. After both teams failed to score in the second inning, the Grizzles pushed four runs across the plate on two hits and two Earlham errors in the third.
Trailing 4-1, the Quakers offense struck in the bottom of the fourth inning. Earlham loaded the bases with one out, and junior Ian Bach moved all runners up 90 feet with an RBI-single. After a strikeout, senior Nate Lynch singled scoring another run, and Barger walked with the bases loaded to tie the game 4-4.
Earlham's starting pitcher, freshman Colin Greve, kept the Grizzlies off the scoreboard in the top of the fifth, and consecutive RBI-hits from freshman Isaiah Shake and Bach in the bottom half of the inning putting Earlham ahead 6-4.
The Quakers' fielding woes continued in the sixth as Franklin used two more errors to score two unearned runs and tie the game 6-6.
Neither team scored until the eighth inning when junior Kendal Baker reached base via an error. After advancing to second on a balk, Barger singled home the go-ahead and game-winning run.
Junior Matt Mathies earned the victory, allowing two hits and no runs in two innings pitched. Eryk Jones took the loss for Franklin, allowing one unearned run in three innings.
Bach finished 3-4 with two RBIs to lead the Earlham offense. Barger added a 2-4 performance with a stolen base while freshman Danny Dopp also had two hits.
In the game two loss, Franklin jumped out to a three-run lead in the first inning off of a home run from Nick Wright. The Grizzlies added another in the third and led 4-0 after three innings.
Franklin starter Jacob McMain, who faced the minimum through four innings, ran into trouble in the fifth. Senior Cody Krumlauf tripled and Dopp followed by reaching base via a hit by pitch. After advancing to second on a wild pitch, Shake drove both home with a single.
Freshman Jordan Christian, who had a career-high seven strikeouts in the game, stranded a one-out double in the top of the sixth inning, setting up a game-tying, two-RBI single from senior Eric Elkus in the bottom half of the inning.
With the game tied 4-4, the Quakers surrendered the go-ahead run on a triple and sacrifice fly in the top of the ninth. Dopp provided a two-out double in the bottom of the ninth, but after stealing third, a groundout ended the game.
Mathies took the loss despite allowing just one earned run in 2.1 innings pitched. Aaron Leming, who came in from the Grizzlies' bullpen, picked up the win.
Both team finished with seven hits. Seven different Quakers tallied a hit while Wright finished 2-4 with four RBIs for the Grizzlies.
Earlham stands at 9-7 overall and 4-3 in HCAC play after dropping the three-game series to Franklin 2-1. The Quakers return to Sadler Stadium against Bluffton University on Tuesday before embarking on a 21-day, 12-game road trip over a three-week period.