NORTH MANCHESTER, IND. – A heaping helping of offense highlighted a wild set of Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference match-ups at Gratz Field Friday, March 24.
The host Manchester University Spartans bashed five home runs and three doubles out of a combined 20 hits to help chase 20 runs across the home dish of their friendly confines. However, in each case, visiting Mt. St. Joseph University kept its strong start to the season intact rallying with two runs in the top of the eighth to hang on for a crazy 18-17 game one victory and then busting open the nightcap with 12 runs in the top of the eighth in route to a 13-3 final.
Despite dipping to 3-10 overall and 0-2 in the league, the numbers were impressive for Coach Rick Espeset's team at the plate especially in the case of senior outfielder Chad Schultz (Fair Oaks, Ind.) and freshman catcher Joe Gallatin (Muncie, Ind.). Schultz, continuing a monster week in which he's sent five baseballs over fences at three different fields, went six-of-nine with three home runs, six runs scored, a double and three RBI as part of a stratospheric .667 batting average and 1.778 slugging percentage. Gallatin turned heads, too, with eight RBI in game one to add to an afternoon/early evening in which he finished with two home runs, a .500 average and 1.375 slugging percentage.
The Spartans look to salvage the final game of the conference set Saturday, March 25. First pitch is 12 p.m.