By: Andrew Utz ~Staff Writer~
March has been hard on the Musketeers this season. Since March 24, the baseball team’s record has been 1-9.
The single win came from an away game at Ohio University.
The Musketeers totaled nine runs with 15 hits in the game against the Bobcats. Freshman Nate Soria went 3-for-6 at the plate, with three RBIs.
Senior Eric Stiene pitched for the first four innings, only allowing five hits and two runs while on the mound.
Senior reliever Zach Johnson recorded his first career win while striking out three and only allowing two hits and a single run.
Xavier played a three-game series against Northern Kentucky University (NKU) the following weekend. The team hosted the first game on March 27, but fell 7-4.
NKU put up seven runs in the first two innings off sophomore Brad Kirschner, but reliever Greg Jacknewitz prevented the Norse from scoring again. The sophomore threw for five innings with five strikeouts.
The following day looked better for the Musketeers.
Senior Adam Hall pitched the first five innings and allowed only one run while striking out six.
The Muskies held a 3-1 lead until the top of the sixth, where the Norse made five runs off Hall and reliever Johnson.
NKU added another four runs in the ninth.
Xavier rallied but fell short in the bottom of the ninth, dropping 10-5 in the final score.
The final game of the series was played at NKU, where sophomore Trent Astle threw for six innings and struck out six. Astle only allowed three runs during his time on the mound. Reliever Sean Campbell was in for only two innings and allowed one run. But the Musketeers fell short in the ninth, ending the series with a 4-2 loss.
During the following week Xavier visited Dayton before the Big East opener later in the week.
The team collected a total of 12 hits but could not overcome the Flyers, suffering an 8-5 loss.
In the Big East opener against Seton Hall, Xavier notched four runs against a steep, seven-run lead posted by the visiting Pirates. Kirschner pitched for seven innings, allowing only three runs and striking out six.
April 4 played host to a double-header between Xavier and the Pirates. The Muskies fell 4-2 at the end of the first game.
The Pirates secured the series over the Muskies in the second part of the double-header with a 5-2 win.
The Musketeers play this weekend in a three-game series against the Creighton Blue Jays at TD Ameritrade Park.