FORT MYERS, Fla. – Highlighted by a walk-off RBI single by Curtis Caithaml in game one, the Hiram baseball team earned a two-game sweep over Finlandia University on Friday afternoon. The Terriers captured the opening game 7-6, before taking game two by a 12-1 score.
After giving up a 5-2 advantage in the opening game, the Terriers needed a walk-off winner to capture game one.
Trailing 6-5, and down to their final strike of the game, junior Alex Gould drew a full count walk to get a runner on first. After Nate Shorts came on to pinch run, the sophomore came all around to score off the bat of Will Howell to tie the game.
Tommy Dailey came into pinch run for Howell and was brought home on a RBI, walk-off, single from Caithaml. The RBI was his ninth of the season.
The Lions got on the board first in the top of the first inning as Aaron Froelich singled home Brandon Teichman off of starter Tyler Duben.
Despite giving up the first run of the game, Duben pitched well, going five strong innings, allowing two earned and striking out five.
The Terriers were able to respond in the next two innings, as freshman Zachary Bailey bust on the scene in his first-career start.
In the bottom of the first, the Terriers put a pair of runners on base before Bailey uncorked a three-run shot over the right field fence, giving Hiram a 3-1 advantage.
After Alex Perrella reached on a hit by pitch in the bottom of the second, Tyler Carcioppolo doubled down the left field line to put a pair of runners in scoring position with two outs. Bailey then came up for the second time in two innings, coming through with a two-run single to stake Hiram to a 5-1 lead.
Finlandia would come back, scoring five between the fourth and sixth innings to take the one-run advantage.
Sophomore Mike Eversole came on to pitch in the top of the seventh inning, and, after giving up a single to the leadoff hitter, retired three Lions in a row, to keep the score at a one-run difference. That then led to the seventh inning heroics from Caithaml, giving Eversole his first-career victory on the hill.
Bailey and Caithaml were the lone hitters with a multi-hit game in the first contest. Bailey finished with five RBIs while Caithaml added the other.
In game two, the Terriers got a complete-game pitching performance from freshman Justin Humphry, as the Hiram bats banged out 12 runs in the 12-1 win.
Humphry produced his best game as a Terrier, going the distance in his second start. He finished, scattering just four hits over seven innings while not allowing an earned run and striking out eight.
Eversole then provided the big hit, coming back up for the second time in the frame, producing a two-RBI single to round out the scoring in the inning.
After a sacrifice fly by Vince Suso pushed the lead to 7-0 in the third, Gould came through with a two-run double in the fourth. That double scored Eversole and Bailey to get the advantage to 9-0.
Hiram would add three more runs in the fourth inning to extend the lead to 12-0, before Finlandia tallied their first, and only, run of the game.
Gould led the Terriers in game two, posting a 4-for-4 game with three doubles and three RBIs. PJ Suso finished the day with a pair of hits, while Eversole and Caithaml added a pair of RBIs.
Hiram will finish their spring-break trip on Saturday morning as they take on Lakeland University. The matchup with the Muskies is scheduled for 9 a.m.