PORT CHARLOTTE, Fla. – Another victory, another game where the Heidelberg University baseball team had to dig out of a hole. The Student Princes fell behind 3-0 after one inning to Montclair State, but responded right back with 4 in the top of the second and never trailed from that moment on. The Berg would hold on in the end winning 9-7 as sophomore Derek Hendrixson pitched the final three innings of the game to earn the save. This was the second meeting of the season between these two foes, as on Monday Heidelberg walked off with a 7-6 win in 11 innings over the Red Hawks.
After allowing three early runs in the first inning, Heidelberg quickly had an answer in the top of the second. Eric Monroe and Steven Morse opened up the inning with back-to-back singles before Adam Hershberger drove in Monroe with an infield base hit. An RBI groundout by T.J. Harkness in his first plate appearance of the year plated the second run of the inning before an RBI single by Joey Rydzewski tied the game. The Student Princes took the lead on a sacrifice bunt by Evan Long, making the score 4-3 after one and a half innings.
Heidelberg starting pitcher Jimmy Kenosh, making his first appearance for the Berg after missing last year, settled in after the first. He kept Montclair State off the board for three straight innings as HU added one run onto their lead in the top of the fourth with an RBI ground out by catcher Alex Grove. Kenosh finished his day throwing four innings, giving up five hits, three runs, two earned, while striking out three and walking a pair, not receiving the decision.
The Red Hawks plated one run in the fifth, and that 5-4 score held until the top of the 7th when Heidelberg came to bat. With one out, junior Derek Hug hit what looked to be a single to short right-center field, but he used his speed and stretched it to a double to give the Berg a runner in scoring position. Hug promptly stole third base and was then driven in when Morse roped a single to right field. The Student Princes scored one more in the inning when Hershberger reached on an error, allowing Morse to score.
Montclair State answered quickly, however, scoring two in the bottom of the frame to pull within one, but the Berg responded again, getting a pair in the 8th when Rydzewski scored on a wild pitch and Monroe driving in Grove.
Ben Sniezek was the first reliever after Kenosh departed, throwing two innings while giving up three runs, with only one being earned. Sniezek (1-0) earned the victory in relief, striking out two during his time on the mound.
Hendrixson came on in the 7th with no out and preserved the lead for Heidelberg, finishing off the game with a three-inning save, his second of the year. The sophomore finished his outing giving up three hits and one earned run while striking out five Montclair State batters.
The offense for the Berg was spread out on the day, as their seven RBI came from seven different players. Five different Heidelberg hitters recorded two hits in the game, led Long and Hug, who each hit a double.
BEYOND THE BOX SCORE: Heidelberg has now stolen 17 bases in their 5 games so far, which dwarfs the four they have given up to their opponents. Hug leads the way with five.
The Student Princes have trailed in each of their last four games, coming from behind to win each of them.
Heidelberg will have Thursday off before they return to action in Florida on Friday to face UMass Boston. That game in the Snowbird Baseball Classic is scheduled for 2:00 p.m.