With the bases loaded and one out in the bottom of the of the 10th inning, Al Nennig ‘17 earned the game winning RBI in walk-off fashion. After a long battle with Marietta pitcher David Stover, Nennig was hit by a pitch for the second time in Sunday’s contest. The Big Red met in a celebratory huddle near first base after Tucker Davison ‘17 crossed home plate to win the game 3-2.
Nennig said getting the game-winning RBI was an experience he’ll never forget “I knew as I stepped into the batter’s box that I just had to hit the ball hard on the ground or into the outfield. When I saw the opportunity to wear a pitch that was thrown inside on me, I let the ball skim across my chest.
“It wasn’t the prettiest way to win a baseball game, but it got the job done and resulted in our team winning a crucial game over a very tough opponent.” Nennig said.
The victory was further evidence of Denison baseball’s forward trajectory this season. Last year when Denison faced Marietta, they suffered an overwhelming 19-1 loss. This year the game was a fierce battle between pitchers. In 10 innings, both sides brought their best and gave up just 11 hits.
Zach Huarte ‘18 pitched nine innings for the Big Red, striking out nine and allowing two runs. In the five games that Huarte has started this season, he has struck out 30 batters and kept his earned runs down to eight.
Denison’s relief pitching also came up big. After an intentional walk in the top of the 10th inning, Marietta had the bases loaded with just one out. Ian Walsh ‘16 stepped to the mound and made swift work of his inherited runners, earning the win after his crucial scoreless outing.
Runs for the Big Red came from Al Nennig, who crossed home plate after a passed ball to put Denison on the board in the seventh, tying the game 1-1. Joseph Maydwell ‘18 got the go-ahead run in the same inning after Sam Franzen ‘18 singled to shortstop. A lead-off double for Marietta caused trouble in the top of the ninth, but Denison’s bats were good enough to load the bases and force a run in the bottom of the tenth.
After coming up victorious on Sunday, Denison baseball’s record improved to 10-5.
“Our team has a significant amount of talent this year, and we know deep down that we can have a special season if we stick together and play our style of baseball.” Nennig said. Denison kicks off conference play with a double-header on Saturday, April 9 against DePauw at Big Red Field. DePauw is currently 11-9 overall this season.