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Foresters fall in title game to Marian

Article provided by Huntington University

The 3rd-seeded Forester baseball team’s hope of repeating as the Crossroads League Tournament Champions was stalled by 5th-seeded Marian University Wednesday afternoon at Taylor’s Winterholter Field. The Knights came out with bats a swinging to hand HU a 9-1 loss in the championship game of the conference tournament.

The loss wraps up the season for Huntington, while the win sends MU to the 2018 Opening Round of the NAIA National Tournament as the league’s tourney champs.

Marian entered the day leading the league in hits per game (10.33) and boasting the second-best batting average (.317). They wasted little time living up to their reputation to bolt out to a 3-0 lead behind a two-run blast by the league’s player of the year in Cody Earl in the bottom of the first. MU would go on to post 11 hits on the day and a team batting average of .314.

Their early advantage would more than stick as the Knights would pile on six more runs by the seventh before Matt Kunce launched one out of the park in the top of the eighth for HU’s only offense of the day. It was Kunce’s first dinger of his Forester career.

DJ Moore was charged with the loss on the mound. He tossed the first five frames and gave up six hits, five runs, three of which were earned, and two walks while striking out five.

For the tournament, Jamar Weaver and Adam Roser led the league in runs batted in with eight each. Roser collected a league-best 12 hits while Donovan Clark topped his league peers in steals with five and was second behind Roser in hits with ten.

Connor West spent 14.2 innings on the hill over the course of the tourney, the second most of any pitcher, without allowing any earned runs.

While it wasn’t the fairytale ending head coach Mike Frame and his crew was hoping for, the Foresters saved their best for last having gone 5-2 over the last six days to outplay their seeding and finish the year with a record of 23-24.