March 16 – BETHANY, W. Va. – The Bethany College baseball team opened play at the new-look Bison Stadium as they fell 9-5 to La Roche College on Wednesday afternoon.
Bethany fell behind early as La Roche used a two-run homer in the first inning to take a 2-0 advantage.
The Redhawks added to their lead with two more runs on four hits in the third, making it a four-run deficit for the Green & White.
The Bison offense awoke in the bottom of the fifth as John Lee (Worthington, Ohio/Thomas Worthington) led off with a bunt single and advanced to second on a throwing error. Alex Martin (Sound Beach, N.Y./Miller Place) then doubled to deep right-center field to drive in Lee, cutting the Redhawk lead to 5-1.
Bethany threatened again in their following at-bats as Jacob Stemmerich (Greensburg, Pa./Greater Latrobe) led off the sixth with a double to left center. Pinch hitter Ryan Nickerson (Huntington Beach, Calif./Hungtington Beach) drew a walk and Kevin Marthinsen (Pittsburgh, Pa./Upper St. Clair) was then hit by a pitch to load the bases. The Redhawks, however, managed to retire the next two batters and escape the inning with their four-run lead (5-1) intact.
In the seventh inning, the Bison scratched another run on the board with a two-out rally. Zach Miller (West Mifflin, Pa./West Mifflin) singled down the left field line and came around to score (5-2) after Stemmerich reached on an error by the right fielder.
La Roche added runs in the final two innings to increase their lead to 9-2. The Redhawks finished the game with 15 hits.
Bethany put together a rally in the bottom of the ninth inning, highlighted by a two-run homer from Saige Micomonaco (Middletown, Ohio/Madison). The Green & White scored three runs on four hits in the ninth. The home run marked the first of Micomonaco's Bethany career.
The Bison began the inning with a single from Hyte Eurich (Cabot, Pa./Knoch) before Miconmonaco crushed one over the left-center fence. Ben Gavlik (Hong Kong/Hong Kong International) restarted the Bison offense with a double down the right field line, and Nickerson singled up the middle to drive him home.
Martin and Miller led the offense with two hits apiece on the day. The Bison totaled 11 in the contest.
Pitchers Cody Gross (West Mifflin, Pa./West Mifflin), Joe Giles (McKees Rocks, Pa./Sto-Rox), Nick Gross (Pittsburgh, Pa./North Allegheny) and Joe Hoffman (Allison Park, Pa./Deer Lakes) all earned time on the mound for Bethany. Giles went four innings, allowing just one run on four hits while striking out three.
The Bison baseball team will return to action on Wednesday, March 23 as they travel to Beaver Falls, Pa. to take on Geneva in a Presidents' Athletic Conference matchup. The conference-opener is slated for 4:00 p.m.