By Scott DeWeerd, '15
ALBION, Mich. – Albion College stood toe-to-toe with six-time defending Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association champion Adrian College at Frank Joranko Field Saturday afternoon as the teams split one-run games decided in extra innings.
Albion scored three times in the fifth to forge a tie, but it ultimately lost game one, 6-5, in 10 innings. Gunnar Owens pitched a perfect eighth inning and Ronnie Williams III delivered the walk off single as the Britons salvaged a split with a 3-2 victory in game two.
Michael Fischbach drove in four runs and scored a run on three hits in five appearances at the plate for Albion.
Fischbach also scored in the fourth inning when he smashed a solo home run to right field, his third homer of the year.
Kyle Kowal, Michael Bernard, and Jack Wyman each had a double and Kowal added the other RBI in the game. Bernard came in as a pinch hitter and doubled in his only at-bat. Dennis also scored a run for the Britons.
Craig Conway started on the mound for the Britons and threw six strikeouts in five innings. Jack Wyman relieved Conway and threw eight strikeouts while giving up just two hits and one run in five innings pitched.
"Jack threw an excellent game," Head Coach Scott Carden said about the first-year pitcher.
Williams ripped a walk-off single to right field as a diving effort by Adrian second baseman John Joseph came up short.
With no outs in the bottom of the eighth inning, a perfectly placed sacrifice bunt by Dennis pushed Chase Carpenter to third base. A few minutes later, Williams' single snuck past the Adrian defense allowing Carpenter to jog home safely as the crowd went wild.
"We've been finding ways to win," Carden said. "We've had some timely hitting."
Zach Maresh threw seven innings and gave up just four hits and two runs while compiling three strikeouts.
"Zach grew up tonight," Carden said about the right-handed sophomore from Lake Orion. "He was able to find his spots."
Owens (1-0) picked up the win in relief.
"Gunnar was outstanding," Carden noted.
Steven Marowski stood out for the Britons picking up three hits in four at-bats. Carpenter smacked a double to left-center in his only at-bat in addition to scoring the game-winning run. Fischbach had a double, a stolen base, and a run scored on a wild throw. Jordan Fujarski added an RBI.
The teams will complete the weekend series at 1 p.m. Sunday with a doubleheader at Adrian's Nicolay Field.