NORTH MANCHESTER, Indiana – Joe Gallatin hit two home runs including a go-ahead blast in the bottom of the eighth inning lifting Manchester University to a 4-3 victory over the Earlham College baseball team in Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference (HCAC) action on Friday.
Gallatin, who put the Spartans ahead 2-0 with a home run to right center, took a 2-1 pitch and hit the game-winning home run over the right center field fence at Gratz field in the eighth.
The Quakers scored a run in the fourth on an RBI-double from freshman Isaiah Shake and took a 3-2 lead in the seventh on a two-RBI double from senior Brennan Laird, but couldn't hold their advantage as a leadoff double from Manchester scored to tie the game 3-3 in the bottom of the seventh.
Senior Howie Smith took the loss despite his quality start of three earned runs off of nine hits while striking out six in 7.2 innings pitched. Smith's counterpart, Brandon Eck of Manchester, also provided the Spartans with a quality start going seven innings and allowing three earned runs.
Both teams finished with nine hits. Laird and Shake were the two Quakers to record two hits. Seniors Matt Barger and Nate Lynch stole bases in the contest. For Lynch, his stolen bag in the seventh brings his career total to 64, breaking a tie with Mark Vagades (1968-71) for the most in program history.
Gallatin finished 3-4 with two home runs and three RBIs to lead the Spartans offensively.
Earlham and Manchester will conclude the three-game series with a doubleheader tomorrow (Saturday). First pitch is scheduled for noon.