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Electrifying Rally Helps Baseball Secure Crucial Split Against No. 16 Johns Hopkins

Ethan Lee-Tyson
Ethan Lee-Tyson
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HAVERFORD, Pa. – The Haverford College baseball team (14-12, 7-3 CC) grabbed a Centennial Conference doubleheader split over visiting No. 16 Johns Hopkins (21-8, 7-3 CC) on Saturday afternoon, taking an emphatic come-from-behind victory by a 10-9 final in game one before the Blue Jays mounted a comeback of their own in the second game to edge the Fords, 5-3.

Haverford senior outfielder senior Ethan Lee-Tyson took over the program's all-time hits record with his RBI double in game two. Lee-Tyson moves past Charlie Carluccio '11, with 192 career hits in an illustrious four years with the program.

Haverford 10, Johns Hopkins 9

The Blue Jays came out swinging, putting up four runs in the first inning against Haverford starter sophomore Nathan Bass. The Fords kept their composure, pushing across an unearned run in the bottom of the frame. Johns Hopkins extended its lead with single runs in the second and third frames, but Haverford grabbed a run back in the third as senior Nick Perez and junior Will Karp reached on consecutive singles. After a fielder's choice put runners on the corners, junior Harrison Burns delivered an RBI sacrifice bunt, plating Perez and cutting the visitors' lead to just 6-2 .

Karp's single in the frame extended his hit streak to 14 games.  Haverford continued chipping away with a spirited fourth inning rally to take the lead. Junior Owen Plambeck was hit by a pitch, and first-year Zach Landry continued his torrid week at the plate with a single into left. First-year Ryan Schwartz singled, and senior Sam Partee drilled a sacrifice fly as the Fords found themselves down by just three. After senior Perez brought home a run with his sacrifice bunt, Karp singled in a run, and Haverford was within one at 6-5.

Lee-Tyson had the big swing in the inning against new pitcher Josh Hejka (3-2), blasting a three-run homer to left field, plating three in the process as Haverford went ahead 8-6. Johns Hopkins answered with two runs in the sixth against Ryan Giovenco (1-3), as Chris Festa was hit by a pitch and Nathan Davis doubled ahead of an RBI ground out from Chris DeGiacomo. Davis later scored on a passed ball and the contest was square at 8-8 going into the bottom of the sixth.

Perez was hit by a pitch and Karp reached on an error to begin the bottom of the frame. With two down, junior Luke Wallis extended his reached-base streak to 25 games with a two-RBI single, putting Haverford in the lead 10-8.

The visitors made things interesting in the ninth, loading the bases against the duo of juniors Nathan Vucovich and Brandon Jenkins, eventually scoring a run on a wild pitch before Jenkins induced a pair of pop ups to end the threat, securing his second save in as many days and third of the season.

The wild, back-and-forth contest saw Landry lead the Haverford attack with three hits, while Karp also recorded his 13th multi-hit performance of the season. Giovenco earned the win with three innings of two-hit relief, while Nathan Vucovich kept the Blue Jays lineup off-guard with offspeed and breaking pitches in his two plus innings of hitless relief. 

Johns Hopkins 5, Haverford 3

After the rollicking offensive battle in the first game of the doubleheader, the late afternoon contest had a much different tenor in the early goings. Haverford sent Dylan Livingston to the hill, as the junior faced off with Matthew Dillard of Johns Hopkins in what appeared to have the makings of a pitchers' duel. 

The Fords struck first in the bottom of the third inning. Karp drilled a one-out single, and after a failed pickoff attempt error moved Karp to third, Lee-Tyson notched his milestone hit with a double down the right field line, plating Karp for a 1-0 Haverford lead.  

A Festa double and a Frank Clara sacrifice fly gave the Blue Jays the tying run in the top of the fourth, but Haverford rallied for a pair of runs in the fifth inning to take a 3-1 advantage. Nick Perez boomed a double into right center, and Karp reached on an infield single, his second hit of the contest to secure a 14th multi-hit game. The stage was again set for Lee-Tyson against new pitcher Jaspar Carmichael. Lee-Tyson laid down a sacrifice bunt, scoring Perez from third and giving the Fords a one-run lead. Harrison Burns then singled into center, plating Karp as the Fords were up by two after five full frames.

Dylan Livingston left the contest after a commendable five innings of three-hit ball, allowing just one earned run while striking out three on 65 pitches. Eric Kopczynski took over in relief and tossed a six-pitch sixth inning before running into his first spell of trouble in the seventh. Clara walked, and Tim Kutcher drilled a homer into left to tie the contest at 3-3.

Perez led off the seventh with a double down the right field line, but Haverford was unable to push a run across in the inning. A dramatic bottom of the eighth inning saw Wallis triple to begin the frame before Plambeck was hit by a pitch to put runners on the corners. Landry reached first base to load the bases on an unusual play. The first-year bunted back to pitcher Jack Bunting (7-0). With the go-ahead runner at third base, Bunting initially hesitated before hastily attempting to tag Landry with a diving attempt. The first-year evaded the tag, and the bases were loaded with no out. Schwartz struck out, and Partee popped up, leaving it up to Perez. Perez roped a ball to third base, where Matt Ritchie made a stellar play to tag first-year pinch-runner Luke Smith for the third out of the inning.

Chris DeGiacomo homered to begin the top of the ninth, and Johns Hopkins later scored an insurance run on an Adam Kohl sacrifice fly in the inning. Bunting secured the series split for the Blue Jays with a perfect bottom of the ninth, as the No. 16 team in the country escaped Kannerstein Field with one game thanks to some late-inning production.

Karp and Lee-Tyson keyed the Haverford lineup in the first two spots in the order, while Perez roped a pair of doubles. Wallis extended his reached base streak to 26 games as he has now reached base on his own merit in each of Haverford's contests this season.

The Fords return to action on Tuesday as Centennial Conference action heats up with a Hood Trophy matchup at rival No. 9 Swarthmore (16-9, 4-5 CC) on Tuesday. First pitch is slated for 3:30 p.m. as the home-and-home series will come to Kannerstein Field on Thursday with a similar 3:30 p.m. first pitch slated.