MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. – Manchester University's offense helped the Spartans end their stay at The Ripken Experience on a high note Monday, March 3.
The Spartans hammered nine extra base hits, including seven home runs, as part of a 25-hit attack that helped them top Muhlenberg College of Pennsylvania 11-7 and Eastern University of Pennsylvania 7-6. Their back-to-back victories helped them close their trip at 4-2.
In game one against Muhlenberg, MU jumped out to a 10-1 lead through five-and-a-half frames to aid freshman hurler Mason Neuman. Neuman struck out four in six and a third innings of work to earn his first collegiate decision. A trio of Spartans ended with multiple RBI efforts, as sophomore second baseman Sean Knepper (Bremen, Ind.) collected two hits and drove in two runs with a home run included, junior shortstop Trevor Kimm (Anderson, Ind.) hit two round trippers during a four-RBI, two-hit game and sophomore designated hitter Aaron Wells added two hits and two RBIs.
The nightcap was a back-and-forth affair with Eastern. A five-run first inning rally gave the Spartans a 5-2 lead, but EU rallied for a tie with two in the first, two in the second and two in the fifth. Junior Kyle Norris (Indianapolis, Ind.) concluded the game and assisted in his first pitching win with a solo home run in the bottom of the ninth to send MU to the victory. Norris wound up with four hits, while senior first baseman Dan Maringer (Fort Wayne, Ind.) and senior outfielder Ryne Lehrman (Hoagland, Ind.) each drove in two runs.
MU is scheduled to return to action Saturday and Sunday, March 8 and 9, with an in-state series against DePauw University. Games are slated for Westfield HS at 12 p.m. each day.