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Hoffman helps push Juniata baseball past Elizabethtown, 6-3

(Posted April 27, 2011)

ELIZABETHTOWN, Pa. -- Starter Will Hoffman (Pheonix, Md./Dulaney) pushed Juniata College baseball past non-conference rival Elizabethtown College, throwing 149 pitches in a 6-3 victory, Wednesday afternoon at Scott Boyd Stadium.

Hoffman fanned one Blue Jay batter and walked six, on three earned runs and six hits in eight innings of work.

The game was scoreless until the bottom of the sixth inning when the Blue Jay's Steve Motika reached on a fielder's choice and stole second to score off of Matt Reade's single.

Once again Ian Thorne (Germantown, Pa./Seneca Valley) was the player to get the Eagle attack going at the top of the seventh inning. Thorne stroked a single, advanced to second on a pitcher error, tagged third on a failed pickoff attempt, and scored on Bradley Medellin's (Lewisberry, Pa./Red Land) single. Medellin then scored on Ben Mersky's (Hershey, Pa./Hershey) hit, to put Juniata (15-19, 5-8 Landmark) ahead 2-1.

The Eagles pulled away, 6-1, with four more runs in the top of the eighth frame. Kevin Campbell (Germantown, Md./Poolesville) pinch ran for Russel Gray (Johnstown, Pa./Richland) and advanced to second on Thorne's single. Joe Sforza (Pittstown, N.J./Immaculata) batted in Campbell. Thorne advanced to second on a wild pitch and came home off another hit by Medellin. Andrew Hirsch (Annandale, Va./Falls Church) singled to bat in Sforza, and Hirsch scored on Mersky's single to center field.

Elizabethtown (15-16, 5-7 Commonwealth) managed to respond with one run in the bottom of the eighth. Ryan Donahue got on base with a walk, advanced to third on Steve Motika's double, and came home on Dillon Tagle's hit. Mike Stobbe scored the third and final run for the Blue Jays in the bottom of the ninth.

Thorne went 3-for-4 at the plate for the day, scoring two runs for the Eagles. Medellin hit 1-for-3, scoring one run and batting in two runs. Mersky went 3-for-5 with two RBI.

Marty Hauck (Bethesda, Md./Walt Whitman) relieved Hoffman in the bottom of the ninth, striking out one batter for the save.

Donahue went 1-for-3 for the Blue Jays, scoring one run. The Blue Jay's utilized seven pitchers, while Jake Hoffstein was charged with the loss with two hits, two runs and one walk in one third of an inning.

Juniata strives for a berth in the Landmark Conference tournament this weekend as they host a three-game series against the University of Scranton. The two teams will play a doubleheader of seven-inning games on Saturday, April 30, starting at 1:00 p.m., with a single nine-inning game starting at 12:00 p.m. on Sunday, May 1.

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