The Tiffin University baseball team split on Saturday afternoon with Purdue Northwest, with the Dragons taking game one 7-6 and the Pride taking the nightcap 5-3. The two schools remain tied for the final spot in the GLIAC Tournament with five games remaining.
Both starting pitchers did their job over the course of the first two innings, but in the 3rd the offenses got rolling. The Pride struck for a pair of runs in their half, plating the runs on four hits. Tiffin countered with a Kyle Lento double down the left field line that plated Noah Heard to make it a 2-1 game.
In the 4th the Pride used back-to-back extra base hits to plate a run to extend their lead. The Dragons did the same, using a Kyle Vance single to pull their deficit to one run at 3-2. The 5th inning was like a dark cloud that hung over the Dragons, as the Pride made it a 6-2 game with three runs on four hits. Reliever Michael Ross was called upon to end the rally, and pitch the Dragons to the bottom of the 6th.
In the last of the 6th, the sunshine reappeared for Tiffin, plating five runs on six hits to retake the lead at 7-6. The Dragons got a two run double from Heard, a run scoring double from Lento, and a two run single from Zach Campbell to tally their five runs.
The top of the 7th was anything but normal, as the Dragons eventually called up game three starter Michael Boswell to save the game with two pitches.
On the mound, reliever Michael Ross earned the win with an inning and a third of scoreless baseball on the mound. At the plate, Brayden Callihan, Ryan Thomas, and Noah Heard all collected a pair of hits. Kyle Lento finished 3 for 3 with two runs batted in. Campbell and Heard also finished with a pair of runs batted in. The save was the third for Boswell this season.
It was a quick turnaround for Michael Boswell, but his offense gave the sophomore an early 1-0 lead. The Dragons managed to plate the run without a hit, using Alec McCurry's sacrifice fly to take the 1st inning lead.
In the 3rd Tiffin doubled their lead with a single run. With one out and the bases empty, Jack Dennis jumped on a heater and drilled the pitch over the right-center field fence for his second homer of the series.
The 4th inning was the beginning of the end for Tiffin, allowing four runs on five hits to give the Pride a 4-2 lead. In the 5th, the Dragons pulled a run closer on an error by the Pride to trail 4-3. Purdue Northwest managed an important insurance run in the 6th to complete the scoring.
Boswell took the loss on the mound, allowing five earned over the course of seven innings. At the plate, Tiffin had numerous opportunities, but stranded nine runners. The offense was led by seniors Jack Dennis and Alec McCurry with two hits and an RBI each.
The two teams remained tied for the final spot in the GLIAC Tournament, and will finish their four game set tomorrow afternoon with a single game starting at 12:00 p.m.