Photo by Alyssa Jones
(COLUMBUS, Ohio) – Walsh offense figuratively exploded in a sweep of Ohio Dominican to take the series from the Panthers at Panther Valley on Wednesday afternoon. The Cavaliers (27-9, 16-4) took the opener 10-5 before demolishing the Panthers (18-16, 9-10) 28-4 in the nightcap.
The win in the nightcap set a new school record for both runs scored in a game and margin of victory. The 28 runs also ties the GLIAC record for most in a game.
In the final game of the series, Walsh wasted no time jumping on the scoreboard with four runs in the first inning. It was just a small sign of things to come. The Cavs kept the pedal to the metal and scored in each of the first seven innings, with six runs in each of the fourth through sixth frames.
In total, 17 Cavaliers made plate appearances in the game with 13 of them hitting safely. Sixteen different runners scored in the game. Walsh was 11-of-20 with two outs, 21-of-41 with runners on base, 16-of-34 with runners in scoring position, 6-of-9 with lead off batters, 9-of-13 with runners on with less than two out, and 7-of-10 with the bases loaded.
A combined nine pitchers appeared in the game for the Panthers with none lasting more than an inning. They faced 69 total batters with the Cavaliers going 28-for-54 from the plate. The 28 hits is tied for third in a single game. The 11 doubles broke Grand Valley's record of 10 against Hillsdale set on May 2, 2001. The 54 at-bats are now fourth. The 12 walks are tied for fourth-most in GLIAC history.
Johnny Knight IV led the offensive barrage as he went 4-for-8 for the game with six RBI and three runs scored.
Nick Bebout started the game and recorded the win for his first decision of the season. He struck out four and scattered three hits in five shutout innings. Luke Miller also starred in relief as he struck out three in a pair of frames.
In the opener, the Cavs took an early lead over the Panthers scoring two runs in the top of the first inning. Jordan Grubb hit his first career grand slam in the top of the third to put the Cavs up 6-0.
ODU scored two in the bottom of the third to make it 6-2. Eric Conner batted in Marcus Bobb to put Walsh up 7-2. The Cavs didn't let up as Austin Szink homered to left center in the top of the fifth to make it 8-2. Szink also homered in the second game for his GLIAC-leading 12th round trip of the season.
The Cavs answered the Panthers' three-run rally in the bottom of the sixth with two more runs on the top of the seventh to close out the game 10-5. Austin Szink went a perfect 3-for-3 from the plate with a home run, two singles and two RBIs. Grubb went two-for-four with a career high six RBIs on the day.
Matt Mittiga got the win to improve to 4-1 on the season. He and Alex Zander had two strikeouts a piece in the game.