Baseball Rebounds To Take Two From Calvin In Series Finale

Leadoff hitter Ben De Ritter helped set the table as the Hope College baseball team swept visiting Calvin Saturday and earned a split of their Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association series.

The junior centerfielder from Jenison, Michigan (Jenison) keyed successive wins of 11-2 and 5-3 by totaling four hits, three RBIs and two runs scored over the doubleheader.

The Flying Dutchmen rebounded from getting swept at Calvin on Friday to raise their record to 12-6 overall and 5-3 in MIAA play.

In Game 1, Hope overcame a 2-0, first-inning deficit with a three-run second.

A two-run double from third baseman Danny Carrasco of Grandville, Michigan (Calvin Christian) tied the score. He later scored on a sacrifice fly from shortstop Jared Blum of Hudsonville, Michigan (Hudsonville).

The Flying Dutchmen broke open the game with a five-run fifth.

De Ritter sparked the rally with a two-run single. Second baseman Jordon Fairchild of Muskegon, Michigan (Oakridge) followed with a RBI single. Leftfelder Mason Opple of Hudsonville, Michigan (Hudsonville) then doubled to center to drive in two, including De Ritter.

De Ritter added a RBI single in a two-run fifth.

Winning pitcher Eric Plaehn of Lansing, Michigan (Catholic Central) improved to 4-0 with his third complete game of the season. Plaehn overcame seven walks, six hits and two hit batters. He struck out one.

In Game 2, De Ritter scored the first run of the game on a sacrifice fly from Fairchild.

Designated hitter Tanner Gilmore of Murietta, California (Alta Loma) hit a go-ahead, two-run homer in the fourth inning for a 3-1 lead. It was his second homer of the season.

The Flying Dutchmen added unearned runs in the fifth and eighth innings.

Opple added three hits.

Winning pitcher Ty Van Wieren of Grand Haven, Michigan (Grand Haven) scattered five hits and two runs — one earned — over 5 ⅓ innings. Van Wieren (2-1) struck four and walked two.

Freshman reliever Matt Van Dyken of Zeeland, Michigan (East) pitched the final 3 ⅔ innings for his first save.

"Yesterday, Calvin did everything right and we didn't do very many things right," Hope coach Stu Fritz said. "We challenged them a little bit today to see how we'd come back and we just got done telling them, never been prouder."

Hope returns to action next weekend with a four-game series against Kalamazoo. | PO Box 9000, Holland, Michigan 49422