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April 20, 2013

Game two offensive attack highlights split

TERRE HAUTE, IND. – Five Manchester University players turned in multiple-hit efforts in the nightcap Saturday, April 20, guiding the Spartans to a Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference split with Rose-Hulman.

Senior center fielder Austin Rieke (Fishers, Ind.) led the 17-hit blitzkrieg with three hits in four chances. The quartet of senior outfielder Cody Schell (Granger, Ind.), senior shortstop Corey Marchant (Fort Wayne, Ind.), senior outfielder Bryce Murphy (Ossian, Ind.) and sophomore second baseman Trevor Kimm (Anderson, Ind.) added two hits apiece.

Murphy  broke up what had been a scoreless pitchers' duel between MU senior Kyle Konarski (Elkhart, Ind.) and RHIT's Ben Menich in the fifth with a two-run single. His safety sparked a six-run Black and Gold rally. Marchant added a double, an RBI and three runs scored, while he and Kimm each swiped a base to add to their game totals.

 Konarski, improving to 7-0, fired eight strong innings, striking out eight Fightin' Engineers and carrying a no-hitter into the sixth. Junior Nick Miller (Huntington, Ind.) came out of the bullpen to work a scoreless ninth with two strikeouts to finish up a 10-1 win for the Spartans (24-5-1 overall, 14-3 HCAC).

Rose-Hulman (12-16, 9-6) plated a pair of two-run frames in the third and eighth innings to gain a close-knit 6-3 victory in the opener. Rieke, as part of a five-hit day, had two hits along with junior third baseman Jordan Nieman (Michigan City, Ind.) and sophomore designated hitter Kyle Norris (Indianapolis, Ind.).

Manchester University attempted to rally back in the late stages, closing the deficit to three runs in the ninth with the bases loaded but could get no closer. Junior pitcher Dylan Padgett (Kirklin, Ind.) struck out five Rose-Hulman hitters, as he battled through seven innings.

MU and Rose-Hulman resume their three-game series at Art Nehf Field with a single nine-inning game Sunday, April 21. First pitch is 12 p.m.

NOTES: The Spartans maintained a two-and-and-a-half game lead over second-place Anderson on the league standings. … Kimm extended his hitting streak to 12 with safeties in each game. It's the second longest skein of the season for a Spartan player. … The senior trio of Bryce Murphy, Marchant and first baseman Brad Murphy (Fort Wayne, Ind.) continued their remarkable on-base game streaks. Bryce Murphy pushed his to 35, Marchant moved his to 31 and Brad Murphy extended his to 19. Kimm (12), Rieke (11) and Nieman (10) also have double-digit strings going. …   Konarski also has an impressive run going with 10 straight wins, dating back through late last seasons, and seven consecutive starts in which he's surrendered three earned runs or less.