Four games on tap this week for Hanover baseball

Nick Ciuffetelli swinging the bat

HANOVER, Ind. - After having half of its games last week postponed or cancelled due to weather, the Hanover baseball team will continue its season this week with four games, inculding a road contest at Berea (Ky.) Thursday afternoon followed by a three-game series at K.T. Young Ballpark against Carroll (Wis.) Saturday and Sunday. 

THIS WEEK'S OPPONENTS: Hanover and Berea were originally scheduled to play Wednesday, but due to the weather, the two teams will now meet in Berea, Ky. Thursday, March 22. First pitch of the non-conference match-up is set for 4 p.m. at the Berea Sports Complex. The Mountaineers will enter the game having lost 16 straight games for a 2-20 overall record. A member of the USA South Conference, Berea has already played nine conference games and is scheduled for three more Friday and Saturday. 

Through 22 games, the Mountaineers are hitting .225 as a team with a 9.25 earned run average and a .913 fielding percentage. Senior Nathaniel Summey leads the team in average (.333), at-bats (87), hits (29) and extra-base hits (6). Junior Griffen Norris is the team's top pitcher with a 6.06 ERA in 32.2 innings of work. 

Carroll is scheduled to arrive to campus Saturday for a single game at 4:30 p.m. followed by a doubleheader Sunday beginning at 12 p.m. in Hanover. The Pioneers are currently 6-2 on the season and have won their last two games. After eight games, Carroll is hitting .364 as a team with a 4.96 team earned run average and a .937 fielding percentage.

Senior Jacob Langford paces a hot-hitting lineup with a .514 average, 18 hits, 10 runs scored and nine RBI, while junior Logan Johnson has pitched to a 2.31 ERA in 11.2 innings. 

LAST WEEK: Hanover was scheduled to play at Thomas More (Ky.) last week, but that game was postponed due to weather. The Panthers were then set to host Wabash in a three-game set for the team's first home games of 2018, but lost one of those three games to weather as well. The two teams did play a doubleheader Sunday at K.T. Young Ballpark with the Little Giants winning both games 8-3 and then 3-1.

Hanover led 3-2 after six innings of play, but six runs in the final three innings gave Wabash a win in the opening contest. The two teams were then tied 1-1 into the fifth inning of game two when the Little Giants scored a single tally in the top of the inning and added an insurance run in the ninth for the two-run victory.

ONE-TWO PUNCH: The Panthers got a pair of strong starts out of junior pitchers Garett Zorb (Medina, Ohio) and David Herrmann (Fishers, Ind.). Zorb and Herrmann combined to throw 13 innings and allow only four runs - three - earned on 11 hits. 

Even though the two juniors are only 2-4 combined, they are both off to strong starts in 2018. In five starts, Herrmann leads the team with 26.0 innings pitched and 23 strikeouts for a 3.12 ERA, while Zorb has thrown 22.1 innings in four starts and tallied 12 strikeouts and a 3.22 ERA. 

SWINGING A HOT BAT: Senior Jack Shine (New Albany, Ind.) hasn't slowed down much since a hot start to the season. In the doubleheader against Wabash over the weekend Shine went 5-7 with two runs scored, an RBI, a double, triple and a walk. 

Through 14 games and 50 at-bats this year, the senior has already recorded 12 extra-base hits, including eight doubles, three triples and a home run. In 146 at-bats last year, Shine had 15 extra base hits, including eight doubles, two triples and five home runs. Shine is currently hitting .440 with a team-best 12 RBI.

ON DECK: Next week Hanover will travel to Crestview Hills, Ky. Wednesday, March 28 to play Thomas More in the game that was originally scheduled for last week, and then be back home Saturday, March 31 to open Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference play with a doubleheader against Manchester. 

Contact: Mike Pritchard