The Saints Baseball Team needed 24 innings to win two games at Lourdes on Saturday. A pinch hit bases loaded single by Eric Henderson gave the Saints the 17th inning, 8-7 victory in game one. Brett Howard batted in three, while Matt King hurled a seven hitter to propel the Saints to a 9-1 game two victory.
In the first game, a regularly scheduled nine inning game, the Saints took advantage of being the designated home team in the 17th inning. To set the stage for the extra innings the Saints started out with a three run first inning. They then built a 6-1 lead in the eighth inning for starter Jake Sperry. But the Grey Wolves scored four runs in that eighth inning to pull within one. Siena Heights responded with what they considered at the time to be an insurance run in the bottom of the eighth inning. But Jake Kret, who came in relief of Sperry could not hold the lead as Lourdes tied the game at seven with two runs in the ninth. Both Sperry and Kret were let down by some defense as they each only allowed two earned runs.
Travis Mielcarek took over on the mound in the ninth inning and held Lourdes to just five hits through the next nine innings. Mielcarek walked two and struck out four, but more importantly he did not allow a run for the rest of the game. He eventually picked up his third win on the season.
Finally, in the 17th inning the Saints offense came through with the winning run. Zach Benschoter led off with a base hit to center field. Kyle Vandercook sacrificed him to second base. Lourdes intentionally walked Cory Lehman to set up the double play. Josh White then singled to load the bases. Then Eric Henderson pinch hit for Corey Caldwell. Henderson singled to score Benschoter from third and win the game 8-7.
Among the many offensive highlights of the lengthy game were the performances of Lehman and White. Lehman went 3-6 with an RBI, a double, a triple, a stolen base, two walks and a hit by pitch. On the other hand, White went 4-8 with three RBI, a double and a triple. In addition Brett Howard was 4-8 with two doubles, while Caldwell drove in a pair.
Matt King took the mound for the Saints in game two. He was gifted a three run lead before he took the mound in the bottom of the first inning. Then after a Howard two run homerun in the 3rd inning he had a 5-0 lead. Lourdes plated their only run in the bottom of the third. That was all King was willing to give up as he shut door until the Saints offense scored twice in the fifth and sixth innings to win 9-1.
King pitched the complete game, seven innings, for his third win of the season. He allowed just the one run on seven hits while walking two and striking out six.
Howard was productive with both of his hits in the second game. He hit a two run homerun with one hit, and had a RBI single with the other. Mike Lollo went 1-3 with two RBI and a stolen base in the game. Bryan Mullen was perfect at the plate with a three for three performance. Lehman also contributed as he went 3-4 with an RBI and two doubles.
The Saints improve to 20-16 and 8-8 in the WHAC. On Tuesday the 10th, the Saints will dedicate their new bas eball stadium against Adrian. The game will start at 4 pm. A ceremony and other festivities will happen before the game.