EVANSVILLE, Ind. – Freshman Manny Vorhees (Wapakoneta, Ohio) cranked a late three-run homer and sophomore Ben Speer (Mason, Ohio) was sharp in relief as the No. 23 Ohio Dominican baseball team scored a key 10-6 regional win over Grand Valley on Sunday.
Leading 7-6 in the eighth inning, senior Colin Kaucher (Toledo, Ohio) was hit by a pitch and junior Joey Machuga (Canfield, Ohio) was intentionally walked. Vorhees came up with two outs and smacked the three-run shot to center to give the Panthers (4-1) their insurance runs.
Speer, who had entered in the sixth inning, allowed one runner in the eighth without any damage, then finished the game with a 6-4-3 double play in the ninth inning to get the save.
The right hander threw 4.0 scoreless innings and allowed just two hits while fanning four in picking up his first collegiate save. It was his first game action since the 2017 season.
Vorhees, meanwhile, finished 2-for-5 with four RBIs. Senior Genesis Hillard (Cincinnati, Ohio) and Kaucher each had two hits and scored three runs, with Kaucher knocking in two as well. Seniors Noah Bland (Oberlin, Ohio) and Brad Hull (Gahanna, Ohio), along with Machuga, also had two hits to lead the offense. Machuga also drew three walks while Bland had two.
Hillard and Kaucher led off the game with doubles, senior Chris Sackett (Loveland, Ohio) had an RBI grounder and Vorhees had an RBI double down the left field line to stake ODU to a 3-0 lead in the first inning.
Hillard then tripled with two outs in the second and scored on Kaucher's RBI basehit to bump the lead to 4-0, but GVSU scored three runs with two outs in the bottom half to narrow the gap.
Bland's RBI single scored Machuga in the third inning, and Machuga would follow with a two-run single to center in the fourth inning to give ODU a 7-3 lead.
The Lakers, though, would score three runs in the fifth to narrow the gap to 7-6, and the score remained that way until the eighth.
Ohio Dominican will head to Chillicothe for a three-game series with Northwood next weekend, beginning with a doubleheader at 1 p.m. Saturday.
Contact: Scott Miles