NORTH MANCHESTER, Ind. - Manchester University squared off with Hanover College in Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference action at Gratz Field on Tuesday afternoon. The Spartans split Tuesday's doubleheader with the Panthers as high-powered offense from both teams dominated play. Hanover took game one by a 19-5 final. The Spartans turned the tables on the Panthers winning game two by a 17-10 final.
Game 1 Hanover 19, Manchester 5 – Box Score
The Panthers' offense exploded for 19 runs in game one. Hanover College also totaled 20 hits. Hanover scored five runs to open the game and added seven more in the third inning.
The Spartans scored three of its five runs in the bottom of the fifth inning.
For Manchester, Tyler LaFollette (Warsaw, Ind. / Warsaw) and Brett Kron (Cincinnati, Ohio / Oak Hills) both hit RBI singles. Kron went a perfect 3-3 in the game. Freshman Zach Thomas (Lowell, Ind. / Lowell) hit a pinch-hit, two-run single in the bottom of the eighth inning. Matt Pritz (LaPorte, Ind. / LaPorte) also finished with three hits in the first game on Tuesday.
Game 2 Manchester 17, Hanover 10 – Box Score
Manchester overcame an early deficit and slugged three home runs en route to its highest run total of the season. MU totaled 20 hits and six Spartans finished the game with two or more hits.
Nick Rush (Terre Haute, Ind. / Terre Haute North) got the Spartans started offensively in the bottom of the first when he tied the game at 1-1 with an RBI groundout.
Trailing 3-1 in the second, Christian Smith (Indianapolis, Ind. / Mt. Vernon) scored from third on a balk by the Hanover pitcher. Joe Gallatin (Muncie, Ind. / Muncie Central) tied the game with a run scoring single. Tyler LaFollette gave Manchester the lead for good after hitting an RBI double down the line in right that bounced around in the corner.
Manchester opened up a six-run lead in the bottom of the third after plating five runs. The Spartans scored a pair following an errant throw in the field by Hanover. Brett Kron followed with an RBI single to left. The big blow in the inning came from the bat of Christian Smith. Smith homered for the first time in his Manchester career. With a runner on, Smith lifted an 0-1 pitch over the big wall in right field giving the Spartans a 9-3 lead.
Manchester added two more runs in the home half of the sixth inning. Smith drove in his third run of th ball game with a groundout to the shortstop. Braxton Riley (Fort Wayne, Ind. / Wayne) followed with an RBI single up the middle that plated Michael Pinarski (Goshen, Ind. / Goshen). Riley posted a 3-4 day at the plate and reached base five times. Pinarski added three hits and three runs for MU.
Manchester's offense didn't slow as Nick Rush launched a grand slam home run to right in the bottom of the eighth. Two batters later, Joe Henschel (Huntertown, Ind. / Carroll) blasted a two-run home run to right field. Rush finished with 5 RBI. Henschel went 4-6 at the plate with three runs scored.
Craig Overpeck (Rockville, Ind. / Rockville) was solid on the mound in game two. Overpeck earned his second win of the season after not allowing a hit in 5.1 innings of relief. Overpeck also struck out three Panthers.
Manchester moved to 3-3 in HCAC play while Hanover moved to 1-5. MU will travel to Franklin College on Saturday April 13 for a doubleheader that is set to begin at Noon.