WOOSTER, Ohio – The College of Wooster piled up 36 runs on 36 hits, as its offense led the way to 21-15 and 15-6 victories against Kenyon College on Tuesday afternoon, completing a four-game sweep in the North Coast Athletic Conference East Division foes' match-up at a warm, but windy Art Murray Field.
Wooster (12-4, 4-0 NCAC East) handled the challenging playing conditions, which included swirling winds with gusts reaching over 40 M.P.H., better, especially early on. The Fighting Scots scored all 21 of their runs of the opener during the first four innings – three in the first, three in the second, seven in the third, and eight in the fourth.
Two of Wooster's initial three runs were unearned, then it got the bats going in the second, featuring a two-run double into the right-center gap by Jarrod Mancine.
Frank Vance led off the home half of the third with a solo home run, marking the first of the junior's career, and that was the first of four consecutive extra-base hits as Cal Thomay, Craig Day, and John McLain all followed with doubles. The seven-run inning also included a Brendan Taylor two-bagger and a Vance two-run base knock.
The highlight of the eight-run fourth, which began with two outs, were back-to-back home runs, first a three-run shot by Day and then McLain's hard liner well over the left-field fence.
That gave the Scots a 21-4 lead in the seven-inning game, and while Kenyon (8-10, 0-4 NCAC East) put together 11 unanswered runs, the outcome was never really in doubt. Danny Reese got the last out of the eight-run sixth and closer Jon Rothman pitched a 1-2-3 seventh to seal the win for Nick Buckingham (3-1), who went the first five innings and yielded three earned runs.
Tuesday's second game was much closer, with the Lords holding a 6-5 lead entering the bottom of the seventh. Then, Wooster's bats came alive again for a decisive nine-run inning, which began with Mancine and Bryan Miller producing back-to-back singles. After they advanced to second and third, Kenyon brought the infield in and Zac Mathie pulled a one-out hit through the right side to put the Scots ahead 7-6.
From there, the floodgates opened, as Thomay later shot a two-out, two-run single up the middle, Mancine singled in two during his second at bat of the inning, and Miller cleared the left-center fence for a two-run homer.
Wooster's comeback may not have been possible without Jon Huisel. The senior side-arm reliever entered in the top of the sixth with Kenyon up 6-5 and runners on second and third and no outs. After walking the initial batter he faced, Huisel struck out one, induced an inning-ending double play, and went on to total 2.2 innings pitched en route to the first win (1-0) of his career.
Earlier Scot highlights in the nightcap included Eddie Reese crushing a three-run homer as the ball cleared the golf house behind the right-center wall and Tyler Schuch thorwing 3.2 scoreless innings of relief.
On a day chock full of offensive standouts, Vance led the way with a combined five hits (5-for-9 with four RBI) and Mathie drove in a team-high six runs on 3-for-7 hitting.
The Scots return to action this weekend with a three-game series against Wabash College (9-7) at VA Memorial Stadium in Chillicothe, Ohio, the site of the NCAC Tournament.