TIFFIN -- A day after a disappointing non-conference road loss, the No. 24 Heidelberg University baseball team took out its frustrations on the Defiance College Yellow Jackets. The Student Princes tallied 20 hits -- including three home runs -- en route to a 17-2 dismantling of Defiance.
Eric Devore enjoyed a career day, pounding home runs in his first two at bats.
Heidelberg improved to 13-4 and Defiance dropped to 9-5-1.
HOW IT HAPPENED
After a 1-2-3 inning by Mac Spears in his first collegiate start, Heidelberg got to work. Kane Bateman singled up the middle and moved to second on a single to center by Kyle Jenkins. Matt Psychas tripled to the gap in right center to score two. Psychas came into score on a ground out by Parker Fronk. With the bases empty, designated hitter Eric Devore launched a home run to left center, giving HU a 4-0 lead.
It was feast-or-famine for the Yellow Jackets in the top of the third. Defiance had three hits and scored a run in the frame, but also struck out three times.
Devore and the Student Princes struck again in the bottom of the third. Jenkins singled and moved to third on a hit-and-run single by Psychas. After Jenkins scored on a wild pitch, Psychas ran home on a single by Fronk. Devore followed by zipping a home run to left field.
Up 8-1, The Berg added a pair in the fourth on a sacrifice fly and a ground out. In the fifth, catcher Sam Runyan helped add another. He singled to left, advanced on two wild pitches, then scored when Zach Doran ripped a single to left.
Following a Yellow Jacket run in the sixth, HU responded with one of their own. Pinch hitter Mike Warden reached on a bases-loaded fielder's choice, scoring Psychas.
With the game well in hand and Dilly Bars in the offing, the relentless Student Princes scored five more as the reserves began to check in. Doran led off by roping a line drive home run down the left field line. Tyler Smith singled before pinch hitter Lucas Springer singled to left center. Deaunte Fleming loaded the bases on a single up the middle. Smith scored when Josiah Aska reached on an error. Two passed balls brought in a pair of runs before Jake Vanek hit an RBI single in his first collegiate at bat.
Spears (1-0) went five innings in his first varsity start. The righty struck out five, allowing one run on four hits. Ryan Keane threw the sixth and seventh and allowed one run on two hits. Trey Ickes worked the final two frames and did not allow a run.
Jenkins, Psychas and Devore all enjoyed three-hit afternoons. Psychas, Devore and Fronk each drove in three runs.
FOR THE OPPONENT
Defiance used six pitchers. Starter Daniel Tomalak (1-1) went 3.0 innings, giving up eight earned runs. Troy Konwinski led the Yellow Jacket offense with two hits, including a double.
INSIDE THE BOX SCORE
Defensively, Heidelberg turned four double plays.
Devore is the second Heidelberg player to hit two homers in a game this season. Jenkins smashed a pair in the 13-11 win over Mitchell College on March 1.
Heidelberg is scheduled to travel to conference rival Marietta for a Saturday doubleheader along the banks of the Ohio River.