CINCINNATI, OHIO -- The Defiance College baseball team hung on for a 6-5 win against Mount St. Joseph University in game one and fell to the Lions, 3-1, in the nightcap to come away with a two-game split to end the Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference series in Cincinnati, Ohio.
Mount St. Joseph (19-17, 13-10 HCAC) began the scoring in game one with a run in the bottom of the third inning on a single.
Defiance (13-23, 10-13 HCAC) came right back to tie the game with a run of its own in the top of the fourth on a sacrifice by sophomore Tanner Stippich (Lima/Allen East). But the Lions answered in the bottom of the frame by scoring a run to regain a 2-1 edge.
The Yellow Jacket offense then found their stride with five straight runs, beginning with three scores in the top of the fifth that included a bases loaded walk by sophomore Troy Konwinski (Allen Park, Mich./Allen Park) and then a two-run double by senior Quinten Harrington (Sandusky/Perkins) later in the inning.
DC then added two more runs in the sixth thanks to a bases loaded hit by pitch and a sacrifice by junior Glen Collier (Zionsville, Ind./Zionsville) to make the score, 6-2. MSJ made things interesting by scoring three runs in the bottom of the sixth to narrow the gap to just a run, 6-5.
Neither team would plate any more runs the rest of the way despite both teams getting runners at third base late in the game, but both potential runs failed to cross home plate.
The Defiance defense came up strong in the ninth forcing MSJ into three straight outs to end the game and post the 6-5 win.
Defiance had 10 hits in the game led by Harrington who went three-of-four with two RBI. Collier also had a multi-hit game going two-of-three with a pair of runs scored and a RBI. Five other players each recorded a base hit in the win.
On the mound, senior Dave Blanch (Alliston, Ont./Banting Memorial) got his first win of the season going six innings and struck out four batters while allowing five runs on seven hits. Konwinski came on to finish the game and pitched three shutout innings to claim his fourth save of the season.
In the nightcap, MSJ tallied all of its runs in the bottom of the third inning with three scores to grab a 3-0 lead. Defiance cut into the deficit with a run in the fourth that came on a double by Weaver to make the score 3-1.
The lone run would turn out to be all the scoring Defiance would get the rest of the way as the Lions held the Jackets to just three hits in the game to go on to the 3-1 final.
Three different players each had a hit for DC with Weaver, senior Zack Reed (Midland, Mich./Bullock Creek) and freshman Everett Kissel (Defiance/Tinora) all going one-of-three. Weaver also drove in DC's only run.
Sophomore Paris Creek (Bryan) went the distance for the Jackets at pitcher, but suffered the loss and is now 3-2 overall. He gave up three runs, none earned, on six hits and struck out four batters.
Defiance is scheduled to travel to Bluffton, Ohio for the final game of the HCAC series against Bluffton University on Tuesday, May 2. The game is slated to begin at 4:15 p.m.