RICHMOND, Indiana – The Earlham College baseball team steps out of Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference (HCAC) play for a non-conference contest at Wabash College on Wednesday. First pitch is scheduled for 4 p.m.
The Teams: Earlham and Wabash. The Quakers are 15-10 overall after an 8-7 win at Mount St Joseph University on Tuesday. The Little Giants enter the contest with a 16-13 after winning a four-game series with Wittenberg University 3-1 last weekend.
The Coaches: Steve Sakosits is in his seventh season leading the Earlham baseball program. A coach of 38 All-HCAC honorees, Sakosits is the program's all-time leader in career victories (131) and has led the Quakers to the HCAC Tournament the past two seasons. Jake Martin is in his first season at Wabash, his alma mater, after spending the previous six season as head coach at DePauw University.
Hitters to Watch: Senior Nate Lynch leads the team in average at a .410 clip to go along with two RBIs. The program's career leader in stolen bases, Lynch broke the single season record (31) with three swipes at MSJ on Tuesday. Senior Eric Elkus, the program's all-time leader in RBIs, has driven in 41 runs while fellow senior Brennan Laird has 32 RBIs and 18 stolen bases. Senior Matt Barger has a team-high 12 doubles. Sean and Andrew Roginski lead the Wabash attack as both average over a .350 clip from the batter's box. The two have combined for 50 RBIs and three home runs.
Pitchers to Watch: Senior Howie Smith has a 5-3 record with a 3.88 ERA in a team-high 51.0 innings pitched. Smith, who has pitched two complete games, also has 46 strikeouts to go along with just five walks. Freshman Kyle Gorman has a 3-1 record with a 4.31 ERA while freshman Spencer Owen, who earned his first collegiate save, boasts a 1.17 ERA out of the Quakers' bullpen. Alex Wagner is the ace of the Lions' pitching staff with a 1.17 ERA in 37.2 innings pitched. Jensen Kirch has a team-high 60.0 innings pitched for the Little Giants while Michael Hermann is 3-2 with a 1.79 ERA.
Chasing Career Program Records: Howie Smith has 19 career wins and sits tied with Ron Williams (1968-70) and Jerry Stroud (1968-71) for the most in program history.
Chasing Single Season Program Records: Eric Elkus is two RBIs shy of tying his own mark of 43 RBIs set last season.
Tops In the Country: Earlham No. 1 in all of NCAA Division III baseball in stolen bases per game at 3.57 swipes per contest. Nate Lynch is third in stolen bases with 28 and second in stolen bases per game with 1.19. The Quakers are also 15th in scoring at 8.7 runs per game. Additionally, Eric Elkus is third in the country in runs batted in per game at 1.76.
Game for the Ages: Earlham and Wabash met at Randal R. Sadler Stadium last year. The Quakers score six runs in the bottom of the ninth inning to win 13-12 in walk-off fashion.
Coverage: Live statistics and live video of the contest will be available – visit the link above.
Up Next: Earlham faces Anderson University in a three-game series on the road this weekend.