The Denison baseball team dropped its 2013 season opener to Mount St. Joseph, 8-1, on Sunday afternoon from North Charlotte Regional Park in Port Charlotte, Fla.
After a scoreless first inning, the Lions plated four runs off a pair of hits and two costly Big Red errors. Denison answered in the bottom of the frame with a run to trim the deficit to three. Junior Andrew Touhy was struck by a pitch to lead off the inning and moved to second when Kyle Clemmenson reached via base-on-balls. After sophomore Nick Marsit sacrificed both runners into scoring position, senior Tim Duxbury laced a single up the middle that scored Touhy.
In the top of the third, Denison starting pitcher Kyle Colgain was in bases-loaded jam with no outs. The sophomore hurler successfully worked out of the jam unscathed. Colgain started his recovery by getting Matt Lakamp to pop out to first and followed that up with a fly out to left. For the final out, Colgain fanned Zak Wagner.
Mount St. Joseph added to its lead in the fifth with another four-run outburst. Once again, the four runs were aided by a pair of DU errors.
Sophomore Ryan Mulligan went 2-for-3 to pace the Denison offense, while Charlie Apfelbach, Danny Kraus, Clemmenson and Duxbury recorded the other DU hits. Duxbury drove in the lone run, while Kraus stole a base. Colgain suffered the loss after surrendering six runs (three earned) on five hits with four strikeouts and two walks in four innings of work. Freshmen pitchers Matthew Agvent, Ryan Loehnert and Ian Walsh combined for 4.1 scoreless innings. The trio combined to scatter two hits and strikeout a pair.
MSJ's Jonathan Roberts went a perfect 4-for-4 with two runs scores, while Cole Wendeln knocked in a pair. Lions' starter Brandon Polking scattered six hits, gave up one run and struck out five in seven innings of work.
The Big Red falls to 0-1 on the year, while Mount St. Joseph improves to 2-3. Denison returns to the field on Monday against third-ranked Marietta College. First pitch from Port Charlotte, Fla. is slated for 11 a.m.