Mastodons trample Goshen in home opener

FORT WAYNE, Ind. – Senior Jonathan Valenzuela-Reece and redshirt-sophomore Shannon Baker each collected two hits and two RBIs to lead IPFW to a 10-2 non-league baseball win past Goshen College Tuesday afternoon at Mastodon Field in Fort Wayne.  Redshirt-sophomore Brock Logan added two RBIs, as well, while junior Mitchell Ley earned the pitching win for the host Mastodons (11-13) against the visiting Maple Leafs (10-20) in the season’s first home game.  IPFW will host Cleary University in another non-league game on Wednesday, March 30, at 3 p.m. at Mastodon Field in Fort Wayne.

IPFW scored all the runs it would need in the first inning with six runs on five hits.  Senior Brandon Soat (2-6) tripled to right center field to lead-off, followed by a walk to classmate Evan VanSumeren (1-3, RBI).  Soat crossed the plate when VanSumeren stole second base and drew the throw down from the catcher.  VanSumeren also stole third and scored from there on a run-scoring single by redshirt-senior Shane Trevino (1-2, RBI).  Senior Kendall Whitman (2-4) followed with another single and both he and Trevino crossed the plate courtesy of a two-run double to left center field by Baker (2-4, 2 RBIs).  Logan (1-3, 2 RBIs), who walked during the at-bat, scored with Baker via an RBI single from Valenzuela-Reece (2-4, 2 RBIs).

The Mastodons added a run in the third inning when VanSumeren produced another run-scoring single to plate Valenzuela-Reece, who had singled, as well.  IPFW scored three more runs in the sixth inning, the big hit being a two-run double to left center field by Logan that scored both Trevino and Whitman, who had reached on a hit-by-pitch and single, respectively.  Logan also crossed the plate in the inning on another RBI single from Valenzuela-Reece.

Ley (1-2) started for IPFW and pitched the first 6.0 innings for the mound victory, scattering four hits and one run, earned, with four strikeouts and three walks.  Redshirt-sophomore Brandon Phelps tossed 2.0 innings of relief for the Mastodons, yielding three hits and one run, earned, with two strikeouts and no walks.  Redshirt-senior Brandon Pease pitched the final 1.0 scoreless inning, retiring all three batters he faced, including two strikeouts and no walks.

Goshen was led offensively by Brad Stoltzfus (2-4) with two hits, while Vincent Cashera (1-3, RBI) and Mike Namisnak (0-4, RBI) each had an RBI.  James Stricker (1-1) started for the Maple Leafs and took the pitching decision, going just one-third of an inning and allowing five hits and six runs, all earned, with no strikeouts and three walks.  Tyler Waslawski was the most effective of the seven pitchers for the visitors, tossing 1.2 scoreless innings and yielding no hits with two strikeouts and one walk.

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