Pioneers dominate, blank Crusaders twice

Two dominating pitching performances helped Marietta College sweep an Ohio Athletic Conference baseball doubleheader from Capital University Wednesday at Don Schaly Stadium. The Etta Express posted a pair of shutouts over the Crusaders, 5-0 in game one and 6-0 in the nitecap.

Marietta improved to 20-10 overall and 9-3 in the OAC. Capital slipped to 11-16 on the season and 2-10 in conference play.

Jason Byers (7-0) carried a no-hitter into the eighth inning of the first game. Capital managed just one hit as Byers and Mike Fulton combined for the shutout. Byers threw eight innings, walking four and striking out eight. Fulton retired the Crusaders in order in the ninth.

Mitch Geers doubled to right field in the home half of the first inning and later scored when Ryan Hanahan laced a single up the middle. Marietta added two more runs in the fifth after loading the bases with two outs. Josh Ungerbuehler drove in two runs with a single past the CU third baseman.

Robert Fravel (2-4) took the loss despite making a quality start. He worked seven innings and allowed three runs on eight hits. Fravel struck out six and didn’t walk a batter. Adam Journic gave up two runs on two base hits with a walk in an inning of work.

Marietta plated a couple of insurance runs in the eighth. Hanahan smacked an RBI-triple down the right field line scoring Ungerbeuhler who reached on a walk. Kevin Johnston drove in Hanahan with a single up the middle.

Hanahan went 2-for-4 with a triple, run scored and two runs batted in. Geers also finished 2-for-4 with a double and run scored. Ungerbuehler drove in two runs.

In the second game, Mike Finlan (2-2) tossed a complete-game shutout or the win. Finlan scattered six hits, struck out five and didn’t walk a batter.

The Pioneers scored all the runs they would need in the first inning. Christian Demko and Geers were hit by pitches to lead off the inning. Hanahan layed down the sac bunt but all hands were safe when the Crusaders threw the ball away at first base.

Demko scored on the error, while Geers and Hanahan ended up at third and second, respectively. Ungerbuehler followed with a sharply hit single up the kiddle scoring both Geers and Hanahan to put MC in front 3-0.

Michael Davis (1-2) started on the mound for Capital and took the loss. Davis pitched three innings and allowed four runs on three hits. He walked two and struck out one. Seniors Jeremy Finchum and Jared Lee threw in relief.

Marietta added a run in each of the third, fifth and seventh innings. Tim McCoy plated a run in the third on a fielder’s choice. Tyler Packanik had an RBI-single in the fifth, while Ungerbuehler scored on an error in the seventh.

Ungerbuehler had the only extra base hit in the game, a double, and finished 2-for-4 with two runs batted in. Packanik also had two hits in the game for the Pioneers.

Marietta is scheduled to travel to Ada on Friday for a 1 p.m. doubleheader against Ohio Northern University.