It was a long day at the ballpark for BC baseball, but after a pair of rain delays and an extra inning, the Pilots picked up a pivotal Crossroads League victory on Wednesday over Saint Francis. Bethel's 5-4 win moves them to 18-15 on the season and 8-13 in league play with just six league contests on the docket.
What was slated as a nine-inning affair turned out to last just a little longer as BC and USF found themselves deadlocked at 4-4 after a delayed start and also had a 13-minute rain delay in the fifth. Bethel led 2-0 when the teams took a timeout to let the weather pass. When play resumed, Saint Francis came out guns blazing.
In the top of the sixth, USF landed four hits that turned into four runs to take their first lead of the afternoon. The Pilots, however, fired right back by scoring a pair of runs thanks to a RBI single from Morgan Erla and a sacrifice fly off the bat of Collin Affolder.
With the game tied, BC's skipper, Seth Zartman, called on Caleb MacPherson to take over on the hill in the seventh. The senior retired three-of-four in the frame to keep the Cougars at bay while Zartman made another move in the eighth by handing the ball to Eric Kelver who finished the ballgame for BC. Over his final three innings, Kelver faced just nine batters, denying USF any offensive production.
In the bottom of the tenth, back-to-back walks by Seth Kermode and Austin Branock put the Pilots in scoring position. After a flyout to left put the second out on the scoreboard, a single off the bat of Heath Brooksher plated Kermode and gave the Pilots their third one-run, extra-inning win in the last five days.
The Pilots will be back on their home field on Friday and Saturday hosting Mount Vernon Nazarene in a single nine-inning contest on Friday followed by a doubleheader on Saturday.
The Bethel College Pilots compete in 17 intercollegiate sports for men and women. While accumulating 3 NAIA National Championships and 32 NCCAA National Championships by 10 different athletic teams, Bethel has also produced 143 NAIA All-American honors and 309 NAIA Scholar-Athlete honors over the past decade. Bethel College is an accredited Christian college offering associate, bachelor's, and master's degrees in more than 70 areas of study. Connect with Bethel Athletics online at BethelCollegePilots.com or via Facebook, Twitter (@Bethel_Sports) and Instagram (@BethelPilots).
|Saint Francis (Ind.) ( 11-36-1 (4-17))||0||0||0||0||0||4||0||0||0||0||4||8||0|
|Bethel College ( 18-15 (8-13))||0||0||0||2||0||2||0||0||0||1||5||7||2|
|Saint Francis (Ind.)||Pitching||Bethel College|
|Saint Francis (Ind.)||Indv. Stats||Bethel College|
|None||Doubles||2 Players (#15,#19)|