INDIANAPOLIS – The Butler baseball team scored two runs in the fifth and two more runs in the sixth to earn a 4-3 victory over Marian in the 2014 home opener. The game was called after the top of the seventh inning due to darkness at Bishop Chatard field.
Marian opened up a 3-0 lead over Butler on Thursday afternoon by scoring a single run in the third and two more in the top of the fifth. The Knights used small ball tactics to score their first run as Jackson singled to right and was able to move into scoring position after a sacrifice bunt. A failed pickoff attempt resulting in a costly error moved Jackson to third base and a sac fly to left field sent the first run of the game to the dish.
The fifth inning was easily the most exciting as each team produced two runs. Marian put base runners on after back-to-back singles, but it was an RBI double from Green that generated the first run. Smith's single through the left side of the infield gave Marian a 3-0 advantage.
Butler was able to counter in the bottom half of the inning as Quincy Quintero doubled to right field to move Will Amador to third base. A pitching change followed the hit, but the results would remain the same as Amador and Quintero would each advance on a wild pitch to get Butler on the scoreboard. Quintero scored the second run off a sacrifice fly to center field with Ryan Wojciechowski taking advantage of his pinch hit opportunity.
Butler stayed hot from the plate as in the sixth as they scored two more runs to earn the 4-3 come from behind win. Marco Caponi drilled an RBI double to the gap in left center. Chris Maranto came around to score after reaching base on balls.
Head Coach Steve Farley called for the sac bunt with Drew Small at the plate. The idea was executed beautifully as Small laid down the bunt and Caponi moved to third. Marcos Calderon continued to help Butler win as his hot shot down the line was too much for the Marian first basemen to field cleanly. The hit allowed Caponi to score.
Each team recorded eight hits on Thursday afternoon. Amador led Butler with a 2-for-4 showing and Marian's leadoff man ended the game 3-for-3 with a run scored. Butler left 10 runners on base, a majority of which came early in the game as the 'Dogs loaded the bases in both the first and second inning. Great pitching would keep BU off the scoreboard as Derek Higgins ended with a solid outing for the Knights. Higgins struck out three in 4.1 innings of work. He was replaced by Austin Moore who took the loss after throwing the final 1.2 innings.
Kyle Allen recorded his second win of the season for Butler as he took the mound in relief of Jeff Schank. Schank struck out a game-high five batters, but he gave up three earned runs in 4.2 innings. Allen was lights out in relief as he blanked the Knights in 2.1 innings of action.
Butler will return to Bishop Chatard High School to face IPFW tomorrow at 3 p.m.