CLEVELAND, TENN. – The Northwood University baseball team opened its 2016 season with a 12-10 win over Lee University Thursday night (February 18).
Lee falls to 5-2 on the season with the loss.
Lee got on the board with a single run in the first inning and had runners on first and third with one out, but a double play got Northwood out of the inning. NU then plated four runs in the top of the second inning, which was started by a home run from Cody Kuzniczci (Madeira, Ohio/Northern Kentucky) on his first Northwood at-bat.
The Timberwolves added two more runs in the top of the third inning to go up 6-1, but Lee fought back. The Flames scored four in the bottom of the third and four more in the fifth to take the lead back 9-6.
Northwood fought back and finished the game strong to earn the win. The Timberwolves scored three in the sixth to tie the game back up 9-9. After Lee plated one to make the score 10-9, Northwood scored one in the seventh to tie the score once again at 10-10. NU then came up with the big hits in the ninth, getting two-out RBIs from Daniel Pulver (Mt. Pleasant, Mich.) and Tanner McCarn (Olivet, Mich./Kellogg CC). McCarn's triple made the score 12-10, which proved to be the final score.
Both teams finished the game with 10 hits, five walks and eight strikeouts. Four Lee errors led to five unearned runs for the Timberwolves.
Nick Black (Chesterfield, Mich./Grand Rapids CC) had a strong first game in a Northwood uniform, finishing 3-4 with a double, three RBIs and two runs scored. Grant Bridgewater (Bay City, Mich./Western) and McCarn each had two hits. The back end of the NU bullpen came up big, as Ken Reeves (Midland, Mich.), Matt Stojkov (Northville, Mich./Saginaw Valley State)) and Shawn Larner (Gladwin, Mich./Alma College) all tossed one hitless inning to end the game. Stojkov earned the win, while Larner picked up save.
Northwood will take on Carson-Newman Friday afternoon (February 19) for a doubleheader that starts at Noon.