PORT CHARLOTTE, Fla. -- Despite a six-run eighth inning by the Big Red, Denison baseball couldn't come back from an early 8-0 deficit as they opened their spring break trip with a 12-9 loss at the hands of Adrian College on Saturday afternoon in Port Charlotte, Fla.
Totaling 14 hits on the day, the Bulldogs started the game strong with an eight-run first inning that saw DU starting pitcher John Troll last two-thirds of an inning.
With Adrian leading 10-1 heading to the home half of the fifth, senior Noah Hahn capitalized on his second RBI of the day when he reached first on a fielder's choice, sending Vince Walker home to make the score 10-2. One inning later, AC's Preston Perry walked Jack Blanchard with the bases loaded to cut the Denison deficit to seven, 10-3.
After the Bulldogs posted two more runs in the top of the seventh, the Big Red entered the bottom of the inning trailing 12-1.
In the next at-bat, Nick Pettigrew added two more Big Red runs when he smacked a double to bring Grady Paine and Joseph Maydwell across home plate. After a Jesse Marks balk sent Walker home, a double down the leftfield line by Blanchard sent Pettigrew across the dish, cutting the Adrian lead to three runs, 12-9, heading to the eighth.
With one out in the bottom of the eighth, freshman Ty Robinson sent a single up the middle to put a runner of first. After Paine struck out swinging, pinch-hitter Brad Baldinger was walked, sending Robinson to second. A balk call on Adrian's Jordan Williams sent the DU runners to second and third base with two outs.
The opportunity was put to rest after Walker struck out in the next at-bat to send the game to the final inning.
Trailing by three runs in the bottom of the ninth, Williams struck out two of the final three DU batters to end the game and stop Denison's winning streak at five games.
Pettigrew led the Big Red at the plate, going 2-for-3 on the day with two RBI's and one run scored. Blanchard and Hahn also totaled two RBI's each.
Denison will return to the diamond on Sunday, March 18 for a double-header back in Port Charlotte, Fla. The Big Red will open the morning with Amherst College at 9:30 a.m. and will then play NCAC foe, the College of Wooster, at 1:30 p.m. in a non-conference matchup.