ADA - Marietta College maintained its second place position in the Ohio Athletic Conference baseball standings with a doubleheader sweep at Ohio Northern University Friday. The Etta Express rolled to a 10-1 win in game one and then took the second game by the score of 5-2.
The Pioneers are 11-3 in the OAC, one game behind Heidelberg University, and 22-10 overall. Ohio Northern drops to 19-10 on the season and 7-7 in the OAC.
Christian Herstine (6-1) was nearly flawless on the mound for Marietta. In seven innings of shutout work, Herstine allowed one hits, walked one and struck out four. Freshman Jim Luyster pitched the final 2.0 innings and allowed an unearned run on one hit with one strikeout.
Zach Bukiewicz lined a single up the middle in the top of the fourth inning scoring Kevin Johnston with the Pioneers' first run of the game. The Etta Express tacked on six more in the sixth inning.
Three Polar Bear errors proved costly as Marietta sent 12 batters to the plate in the inning. Christian Demko, Mitch Geers, Ryan Hanahan, Ryan Annett and Bukiewicz each drove in a run during the rally.
The Pioneers added a run in each of the final three innings for a 10-0 lead heading into the bottom of the ninth. Johnston worked a bases-loaded walk in the seventh, Geers laced an RBI-double in the eighth and Tyler Packanik drove in a run with a single in the ninth.
Ohio Northern spoiled the shutout with an unearned run in its final at bat. Pinch hitter Tyler Deitering reached on an error, moved to second on a single from Anthony Piccolini and then went to third on a wild pitch. Jack LaMarca delivered a sac fly to score Deitering.
Zach Maier (3-3) started on the mound for ONU and took the loss. He threw 5.2 innings and gave up six runs on 11 hits with two walks and two strikeouts. Four other pitchers toed the rubber for the Polar Bears.
Geers and Packanik each had three hits, including a double, in the game for Mariieta. Demko, Hanahan, Josh Ungerbuehler and Bukiewicz all collected two hits. Marietta scored five runs in the first three innings of game two and then held on for the victory. Geers reached on a one-out single in the first and scored when Hanahan tripled into the right center gap. Ungerbuehler followed with a single to right making it 2-0.
Ohio Northern answered right back with a pair of runs in the bottom half of the frame. Aided by a couple of wild pitches, the Polar Bears got an RBI-double from LaMarca and scored the second run on a groundout.
Tyler Nieberding (4-1) settled down after the first inning and turned in another quality start. He pitched 6.2 innings and allowed two runs on three hits. Nieberding struck out five and didn't walk a batter.
Kordell Antill gave up one hit in 1.1 innings of relief and Mike Fulton closed the door on the Polar Bears with a perfect ninth for his second save of the season. Three ONU errors led to a pair of unearned runs for Marietta in the second, while Demko accounted for the Pioneers' final run with a run-scoring single in the third.
Deitering (2-1) took the loss for Ohio Northern. He started and went seven innings allowing five runs on six hits with two walks and seven punch-outs. Devin Carr and Casey Mulcahy each three an inning of shutout relief.
Ungerbuehler was the only Pioneer with two hits in the nitecap as Marietta managed just six total hits.