Ripon, WI -- The Beloit College Baseball team held off a Ripon College rally in the bottom of the ninth of game two to split the first two games of their Midwest Conference series Thursday, winning the nightcap 5-4. The Red Hawks took game one 3-1.
In the second game the Buccaneers scored three times in the sixth for a 5-1 lead before seeing the Red Hawks score once in the seventh and twice in the ninth before the potential tying run was stranded at second.
Beloit opened the scoring with a run in the third on Kam Sallee's sacrifice fly to foul territory in right, scoring Mike Gulve. Ripon tied it in the fourth with a solo home run but the Bucs retook the lead in the fifth with Sallee's RBI double to right center. In the three-run sixth, Gulve walked with the bases loaded, Joey Casa drove in the second run with a fielder's choice, and the third run of the inning crossed on an error.
RC plated their run in the seventh on three hits and then scored scored two unearned runs in the ninth before Jamie Huntley snuffed the rally with one pitch for a game-ending fly out to right. The save was Huntley's fourth of the season.
Luke Brennan earned the win, his third of the season, with seven innings of four-hit, two-run pitching. David Harrison threw 1.2 innings before Huntley came on. Gulve finished with three hits while Casa and Ryan Kaveney had two each.
In the opener Beloit couldn't get the key hit, stranding 15 runners on base, including the bases loaded twice and two left on three times.
The Red Hawks scored twice in the first and a single run in the third and made it stand up. The Buccaneers got on the board in the fifth on Adrian Peil's run-scoring double. But Beloit stranded seven over their final four at-bats, including four in scoring position.
Ryan Kaveney took the tough loss, giving up seven hits in eight innings, striking out eight and walking one, stopping a personal six-game winning streak. Baylee Slevira, Zach Kolasinski and Mark Christine had two hits each.
The teams will meet for the final two games of the series, and the regular season, on Sunday at The Ballpark at Strong Stadium. First pitch is at 1:00 p.m.