GRANVILLE, Ohio – Despite the weather causing a rain delay to start the game, Denison baseball defeated Otterbein University on Wednesday night, 8-3, at Big Red Field in Granville, Ohio.
Notching eight runs on seven hits for the game, the DU offense powered their way past the Cardinals, giving the Big Red pitchers room to work with.
Denison starter John Troll allowed two Otterbein runs in the first three innings of play, but Brian McAuliffe acted as instant offense in the early innings, recording an RBI double in the bottom of the second, and then tying the game at 2-2 in the bottom of the fourth with a sky-high solo home run to right center.
Following Troll's two runs on three hits with three strikeouts in four innings of work, freshman Taylor Perrett came in relief in the top of the fifth to sit the Cardinals down in order.
The Big Red immediately took the lead in the home half of the inning when Tanner Johnson blasted a home run over the left field wall to put DU in front, 3-2. The scoring didn't stop there as Jack Blanchard scored Sam Frazen and Grady Paine from second and third, respectively, on a two-RBI double down the left field line to increase the Denison lead to 5-2.
After Otterbein went to Ren Martin out of the bullpen, McAuliffe added his third RBI on the day with a single to second that scored Blanchard.
Three batters later with runners on first and second with two outs, senior Joseph Maydwell capped off a five-run fifth for the Big Red on an RBI single through the left side, scoring Vince Walker from second to take a 7-2 lead entering the sixth inning.
In the top of the sixth, Otterbein's Connor Brett scored on a wild pitch after sending a one-out triple to right center to cut the Cardinal deficit to 7-3, but the combination of Perrett, Mikey Rivera, and Perley Provost held OU hitless over the final 3 2/3 innings of action to help the Big Red secure their tenth win of the season. Otterbein drops to 11-7 in 2018.
Finishing the night just a triple shy of the cycle, McAuliffe headlined the victory going 3-for-4 with three RBI's and one run scored. Blanchard ended his 1-for-3 performance with two runs batted in and Johnson went 1-for-4 with two runs scored.
The Big Red will kick off North Coast Athletic Conference action this Saturday, March 31, when they head to Springfield, Ohio for a doubleheader with Wittenberg University, set to begin at 12 p.m.