SOUTH BEND, Ind. – After suffering a number of heartbreaking late-inning losses in Florida, the Maple Leafs found just what they needed in the bitter cold weather of Northern Indiana.
With snow still surrounding fields and temperatures hovering around freezing, Goshen received a spectacular pitching performance from senior Spencer Oversen. Oversen's complete-game shutout was more than enough for the Leafs to earn their first victory of the season and the first of head coach Alex Childers' career.
It was the second career complete-game shutout for Oversen, who allowed just five hits and struck out three.
Meanwhile, the Maple Leaf offense rallied for six runs on 11 hits, their second most of the season. They scored twice in each the first and sixth innings, while adding single runs in the fourth and fifth innings.
Freshman Jesse Quintanilla started the day strong with a single through the left side. He would eventually scored the first run of the game on a Caleb Yoder sacrifice fly. Goshen's rally continued when Corey Johnson had the first of his three hits in the game. He then stole second base, forcing an errant throw and allowing Bryan Aponte (who was hit by a pitch) to score from third.
Up 2-0, the Leafs added a single run in the fourth on a two-out RBI single up the middle by freshman Jeremy Wiebe. Then, in the fifth, back-to-back doubles by Aponte and Arick Armington increased the Goshen lead to 4-0.
An inning later, they were back at it. This time it was a two-run double by sophomore Matt Austin that capped their scoring (6-0). Johnson went 3-for-4 and is now leading the team with 12 hits (.375) and seven runs batted in. All but one player in the Goshen lineup had a hit, including Wright who went 2-for-4. Oversen is now 1-0 on the year with a 2.25 earned run average in 12 innings pitched.
More strong pitching highlighted game two. For Goshen, freshman Alex Mosbarger was on top of his game. He held the Saints off the board until the bottom of the sixth inning when he gave up two of just four hits he allowed all day. Unfortunately, he was tagged for two runs and Holy Cross took a 2-0 lead into the seventh and final inning.
Having put together a number of impressive rallies during their Florida trip, the Maple Leafs attempted another late comeback Monday night. A walk, single, and Saint error plated one run and put Goshen in great shape with the tying run in scoring position. Bia Correll came out of the bullpen, though, and recorded the final out giving Holy Cross a 2-1 win and double-header split.
Jordan Gard struck out six and gave up just three hits in 6 2/3 innings to earn the win for the hosts. Quintanilla, Johnson, and Wright had the lone hits for Goshen (1-8) who are scheduled to be back in action with their home debut against Concordia University on Saturday.