Blue Hens fight back to win series against Elon
Delaware opened up the series with Elon with a loss, but bounced back by winning the next two games to take the series 2-1.
Delaware — 25-22, 9-9 in the CAA — lost Friday’s opener 6-2. They started the game off strong, scoring two runs in the first inning, but lacked the same firepower the rest of the game. They went just 4-22 with runners on base. Elon snatched runs in the sixth, seventh and eighth to create even more separation.
The Hens triumphed over Elon, who is 28-20, 10-8 in the CAA on Saturday with a final score of 3-1. The game started off slow, with Delaware not scoring until junior Nick Patten hit his seventh home run of the season to tie the game at one.
Delaware took advantage of an Elon throwing error in which senior Calvin Scott was able to score all the way from first base after a hit to left-center field by freshman Jordan Hutchins.
Freshman Billy Sullivan IV made things tough for Elon for six and two-thirds innings for the Hens. He allowed just one run, striking out seven batters on the day. This performance helped him win CAA Rookie of the Week. Senior Colman Villa replaced Sullivan IV in the seventh for the rest of the game and held Elon scoreless the rest of the way.
“The main thing was our pitching,” Hutchins said. “Billy had seven shutout innings — I don’t even think he gave up a hit. Their only hit was a blooper, so it was hard not to beat one run.”
The Blue Hens wrapped up the weekend series with a 6-5 victory in 10 innings on Sunday. The Blue Hens trailed the game 5-1 with two outs in the eighth inning. They took control near the bottom of the eighth to come back from the deficit.
Three straight walks in the ninth inning forced a pitching change for Elon as closer Robbie Welhaf came in. Tyler Callender brought home both Kevin Mohollen and Kyle Baker to tie the game at five.
In the 10th, it was pinch hitter Austin Niggebrugge that brought home the game winning run after hitting a single.
Delaware now has a three game lead on James Madison for the sixth and final playoff spot in the CAA. Delaware also holds the tiebreaker over the Dukes for winning the season series back in April.
“Well our main goal is to get in,” Hutchins said. “Nothing is secured yet so we just gotta play every game like it matters, and we need to win every possible game we can just to ensure that we’re in the playoffs.”
The Blue Hens will travel to UMBC next to take on the Retrievers on Tuesday.