The Beloit College baseball team topped Illinois College 5-4 in 11 innings followed by a 7-6 rout of Grinnell College in a pair of games played at Galesburg High School Sunday afternoon.
Single run innings added to the drama in game one as the Blue Boys played spoiler each time the Buccaneers took the lead until the 11th inning. The Bucs scored single runs in the first and third while IC tallied scores in the first and fifth sending the game into the final frame of regulation knotted at 2-2.
Ethan Conley tagged a leadoff homer to give the Bucs the lead in the top of the ninth. In the bottom of the innings, a one-out walk came back to hurt the Bucs as the Blue Boy scored two batters later to send the game into extras.
Jalen Davis restarted the offense with two outs in the top of the tenth. An error after the pitching change in Jeremy Dutton’s at bat allowed Davis to score from first and give BC the 4-3. Once again the Blue Boys scored the equalizer, in similar fashion as the ninth. A leadoff walk would lead to the tying run after a three-base error on a sacrifice bunt try.
Conley drew a walk to lead off the eleventh. With one out, Matthew Celentano came up with a huge RBI double in his only at bat of the game to score Conley and give Beloit the 5-4 lead.
The Bucs fended off a two-out rally by Illinois College to secure the extra inning win.
Starting shortstop Mark Christine went 2-for-4 from the plate to lead the Bucs offensively and also picked up the win on the mound in the final two innings of relief work.
The Buccaneers came back from a 5-1 deficit to register the win in game two.
After taking a 1-0 lead in the second, Grinnell exploded for a five-run third to take a 5-1 lead.
Beloit responded with a four-run sixth to tie the game 5-5. In that inning, the Bucs tallied five hits but left three runners on base.
The Bucs capitalized on a hit-by-pitch in the top of the eighth. Baylee Slevira took one for the team with one out, advanced into scoring position on a passed ball and booked it home on a RBI double from Christine.
Beloit added a much needed insurance run in the top of the ninth. Davis led off the inning with a single and moved 90 feet closer to home with a stolen base. Dutton’s groundout moved Davis to third and Conley flew out to right field for the sacrifice fly and RBI giving Beloit a 7-5 advantage.
Grinnell singled, then doubled to threaten with two runners in scoring position and one out. Once again Christine took the mound from shortstop as the defense shifted behind him. Christine forced back-to-back groundouts for the save.
Christine backed up his arm with a 3-for-4 performance at the plate with two RBI in game two. Davis, Dutton and Terrance Cribbs added two hits each in the nightcap.
Up Next: The Bucs will head a short distance south, to Rockford, to take on the Regents for a single game Thursday at 6 p.m.