GRANVILLE -- In a contest between two of top teams in the Mideast Region, the Heidelberg University baseball team lost at No. 9 Denison University on Wednesday evening, 8-2. The Big Red -- the top team in the newly-released NCAA Regional rankings -- scored in six of the eight innings in which they batted. Heidelberg -- ranked third in the region -- committed five errors and only managed six hits.
The Student Princes fell to 23-11 overall while the Big Red improved to 29-3.
Only three HU players found hits -- Kyle Jenkins had three hits, Mike Warden had two and Kane Bateman had one. Despite the dearth of hits, Heidelberg stranded 12 runners -- thanks in large part to eight walks.
After a scoreless first, Denison scored a run in the second and third before they struck for three in the fourth.
Trailing 5-0, Heidelberg came to life in the top of the fifth. With Bateman on second, Jenkins hit an RBI double to center. HU, however, would leave the bases loaded for the second time in five innings.
Denison continued to put pressure on the Heidelberg infield, plating a run in the sixth, seventh and eighth. The Big Red played fundamentally sound baseball -- using two sacrifice bunts and three sacrifice flies as part of their arsenal.
'Berg starter Alec Zoeller (1-2) threw 3.1 innings and allowed five runs (four earned) on six hits. He walked three and fanned five. Reliever Brady Knizner worked 2.2 innings, allowing one run on four hits. Mac Spears and Ryan Keane each allowed an unearned run in one inning of work.
Denison starter Kenny Lippman only allowed three hits, but issued six walks -- and didn't make it out of the fifth. John Troll (5-0) got the win with 2.2 innings of work out of the bullpen.
Heidelberg returns to Peaceful Valley on Saturday for Senior Day. After the 1 p.m. doubleheader with Wilmington, the program will honor Brock Conner, Alex Sir Louis, Joey Wenning, Kane Bateman, Zach Hunter, Matt Psychas, Parker Fronk, Kyle Psychas and Brady Ansara.