BLUFFTON, Ohio (April 22, 2017)- The Franklin College baseball team split a pair of low scoring games on Saturday with Bluffton University, winning the first game 2-1 before dropping game two 3-2.
Game one: Franklin- 2, Bluffton- 1
A stellar pitching performance by sophomore Jordan Clark led the Grizzlies to a game one victory. In a complete game effort, Clark allowed one run, scattered six hits, and struck out eight Bluffton hitters.
The lone RBI for the Grizzlies came in the top of the third from junior Frank Podkul, who drove in fellow junior Ryan Erlandson with single. Erlandson reached on a walk and stole second base, one of his two stolen bases for the game. The Grizzlies stole four bases in the win, with freshmen Brandt Pawley and Nick Wright taking a bag a piece.
Franklin added the deciding run in the top of the fourth, when sophomore Sam Claycamp scored on a balk.
With the pitching victory, Clark improves to 5-0 on the season and ranks second in the HCAC in both wins (5) and strikeouts (60).
Game two: Bluffton- 3, Franklin- 2
In another low scoring pitcher's duel, the Grizzlies came out on the short end. Bluffton scored one in the bottom of the first to take the lead before the Grizzlies answered back for a run in both the third and fourth innings.
In the third, freshman Jarrod Smith drove in Pawley with an RBI single to tie the game. Podkul once again drove in Erlandson in the fourth inning with an RBI double. Junior Jackson Freed and freshman Alex Mis provided multi-hit efforts, Freed with three hits and Mis with two hits, including a double.
Bluffton was able to answer with a run in both the seventh and eight inning off Franklin starter Jacob McMain, who took the tough luck loss. McMain tossed eight innings, allowed 2 earned runs, and struck out five.
With the split, the Grizzlies stands at 18-14 overall and 10-9 in HCAC. Next week, the team returns home to face Hanover College on Tuesday at 4 PM before hosting a three game weekend series with Anderson University on Friday and Saturday.