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Juniata Baseball Takes Two Games From Messiah

(Posted March 19, 2005)

Matt Garner delivered the game-winning hit in the bottom of the seventh inning to help Juniata capture its first of two wins in a conference doubleheader against Messiah.

Juniata 6, Messiah 5
Juniata 6, Messiah 3

Huntingdon, Pa. ? A three-run rally in the bottom of the seventh inning propelled the Juniata College baseball team to a win over Messiah College in the first game of its conference doubleheader, and the Eagles then rode that momentum to a sweep of the two-game set as the Eagles posted 6-5 and 6-3 wins over Messiah in Huntingdon Saturday afternoon. The wins improved Juniata to 10-5 overall and 5-1 in conference play, while Messiah dropped to 6-6-1 with the losses and are now 1-2 in the Commonwealth.

Matt Garner (Bellwood-Antis/Bellwood) delivered a bases-loaded single to give Juniata the win in the bottom of the seventh in game one. Trailing 5-3 entering the inning a pair of walks and a single loaded the bases with none out. Will Russell (Tyrone/Tyrone) singled off the glove of pitcher Kyle Stuckey who entered the game with the bases loaded. Garner followed with a single to left that scored Walt Goedkoop (Manheim Township/Lancaster) and Dan Kauffman (Penn Manor/Conestoga) to give Juniata the victory.

The rally was necessary after Messiah scored at least one run in each of the first three innings to take a 4-1 lead. The Falcons opened the game with a pair of runs in the top of the first off Eagle starter Jayme Fye (Philipsburg/Philipsburg). Juniata answered in the bottom of the inning with an RBI double from Kauffman plating Troy Beaver (Bellwood-Antis/Bellwood) to cut the lead in half. Messiah countered with a run in the second and third.

Juniata pulled within a run with two tallies in the bottom of the fourth as a pair of Messiah miscues allowed two unearned runs to score.

The lead moved back to two when Messiah pushed another across in the top of the fifth. All five runs were charged to Fye who pitched 5 1-3 innings allowing five runs, four earned, on eight hits and fanned six. Jeff Hayes (Indian Valley/Lewistown) came on in relief and earned his third win of the season.

Beaver finished 2-for-3 in the game with a pair of runs scored, while Garner was 2-for-2 with two RBI.

Garrett Dobbs was charged with the loss for the Falcons after he came on in relief of starter Nick Lindner who tossed four solid innings and allowed just one earned run.

Game two was also a back-and-forth affair until Juniata scored a pair of runs in both the fifth and sixth innings to take control.

Both teams scored in the first, and then Juniata claimed a 2-1 edge with an RBI single from Goedkoop in the bottom of the third.

Messiah countered with a run in the fourth on an infield groundout, tying the game at two.

Then in the fifth Beaver and David Saintz (Titusville) singled and then came home on a two-out RBI single from Goedkoop.


The visitors bounced back again cutting the lead to 4-3 when Peter Dyson singled home Chris Heisey in the top of the sixth. But the Eagles had the final answer as a double from Jason Enoch (Hempfield/Landisville) and a single from Saintz knocked two more runs in the Juniata half of the sixth.

Cody Zong then put the wraps on his complete-game win by setting Messiah down in order in the seventh. Zong earned his second victory of the season as he allowed three runs on five hits in seven innings. He recorded four strikeouts in the game. Messiah?s Tyler Hollenbach was dealt the loss as he surrendered four runs on six hits in five innings.

Goedkoop paced Juniata with a pair of hits and three RBI in the victory. Enoch also had a pair of hits while also driving in a run and scoring a run. Saintz and Beaver each scored two runs in the win.

Juniata will be back in action on Wednesday when the Eagles will play a doubleheader at Mount Aloysius.

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Contact John Wall at wallj@juniata.edu or (814) 641-3132 for more information.