BEREA, Ohio-- Denison opened the month of April with a victory over then 25th ranked Baldwin Wallace and they ended April with an 8-4 win over BW to complete a stellar 24-day stretch that saw Denison go 15-2 and improve to 26-8 on the season.
This week, in particular, put the entire region on notice as Denison started with a 9-1 win over Heidelberg and then a 6-4 win over No. 20 Marietta. On Saturday, DU split a doubleheader against second-ranked Wooster only to return for the road victory at BW.
With the pitching staff taxed, the offense came through with a five-run third inning to give the Big Red hurlers some margin for error.
Denison took 1-0 lead in the second inning on a sacrifice fly by Noah Hahn. In the third, Will Krushena blasted a 3-run home run down the right field line, scoring Jack Blanchard and Grady Paine. Vince Walker followed with his fourth triple of the season that scored Brian McAuliffe and Sam Frazen delivered an RBI single to left to give his squad the six-run advantage.
Denison starting pitcher Caleb Struewing pitched 2.1 innings and was removed in the third after giving up three runs on three hits. Andrew Bruss finished the third and gave up one run in the fourth. He was followed by Taylor Perrett who provided three innings of two-hit scoreless baseball. Mikey Rivera finished out the game, striking out three in 2.0 innings.
Paine was 3-for-4 with one RBI and two runs scored. Walker was 3-for-5 with one RBI and two runs scored. Tanner Johnson was 1-for-2 with two walks and a triple and Blanchard was 1-for-4 with an RBI. Blanchard and Johnson each extended their reached-base successfully streak to 30 and 26 games, respectively. Johnson had his 21-game hitting streak snapped earlier this week.
Over the last month, the Big Red is batting .315 as a team led by Blanchard (.424) and Johnson (.420). The pitching staff has posted a 2.92 ERA in 154.0 innings pitched and opponents are hitting .256.
The Big Red will close out North Coast Athletic Conference play this week with a doubleheader against Oberlin on Wednesday (May 2) in Granville and a pair of games on Saturday (May 5) at Wabash.