LINDSBORG —The McPherson College Baseball team earned a split with intra-county rival Bethany College on Saturday on the Swedes' home field. The Bulldogs dropped the opening game of the series on Friday, but bounced back to take the first game of Saturday's doubleheader, 10-3. Unfortunately, they couldn't carry the momentum into the series finale, as the Swedes were able to rally and clinch the series by winning the second game, 7-1.
Dylan Marble picked up the win in game one, going five innings and holding the Swedes to three runs on ten hits with five strikeouts and just one walk. Mairion Brunken came on in relief of Marble in the sixth inning. He went the final four innings keeping Bethany off the board, and scattering just four hits.
The Bulldogs got plenty of offense in the opening game, scoring ten runs on 12 hits led by Brevin Baessler, who was 2-for-5 with a double, and three RBIs. Joining Baessler with multiple hits were Lane Fleming, Trevor Johnson and Jackson Goodmiller.
The Swedes scored the first run in the game in the bottom of the first inning, but then the Bulldogs came out in their next at bat and put up a six spot to break the game open. The Swedes tried to rally, cutting the Bulldog lead to 6-3 with a pair of runs in the bottom of the fifth, but they came up short. Mac added one in the sixth, two more in the eighth and then one more for good measure in the ninth to win by a comfortable margin 10-3.
The Bulldogs were hoping to spoil the Swedes' senior day festivities by taking the final game of the series, but things didn't quite work out like they planned. The Swedes saved the "ace" for game three, and the Bulldogs, while they found a way to get hits off of him, they couldn't string enough of them together to push runs across the plate.
The Swedes' hurler went seven innings, allowing just one Bulldog run on six hits. He also fanned nine, and walked just one. The six Mac hits were all singles, and only one Bulldog recorded a multi-hit game, Dom Ramos, who finished the day 2-for-3.
On the mound for the Bulldogs in the finale was Josh Lewis, who worked the first five innings, allowing seven runs, four of them earned, on six hits, with one K and three walks. Jarrod Manick pitched the final inning, holding the Swedes scoreless on one hit, with one strikeout and one walk.
"Bethany is hot right now," Bulldog Skipper Bryan Moses said."Coach Weaver has them heading in the right direction, and Melendez is the real deal on the bump."
With the split today, the Bulldogs are now 34-12 overall on the season, and 21-8 in the KCAC. They will be back on the diamond on Tuesday to wrap up their series with crosstown rival Central Christian College. The Bulldogs and Tigers are scheduled to play a doubleheader out at Light Capitol Diamond starting at 5 p.m.