Baseball splits with Coe in conference opener

INDIANOLA, Iowa - The Simpson baseball team opened the Iowa Conference schedule on Sunday, beating Coe 2-1 in game one before dropping a 3-1 decision in game two.

On a day more suited for basketball than baseball - it was just 29 degrees at the start of game one - pitching was key. Storm pitchers allowed just 10 hits on the day, but Matt Pennings was able to scatter the five hits he allowed in a game one win while Gage Reis gave up three in the sixth inning of a game two loss.

Sunday's games were postponed from Saturday. The other two games of the series against Coe will be made up at a later date.

Game 1: Simpson 2, Coe 1
Tyler Craig and Jake Esdohr each drove in a run in the first inning and Pennings did the rest, scattering five hits and striking out eight in the complete-game win. Michael Chia singled to lead the game off and Jake Barr singled and advanced to second when leftfielder Michael Goerdt misplayed the liner. Chia scored on Craig's groundout and Barr came in on Esdohr's sac fly.

Coe's lone run also came in the first when AJ Reuter singled in Cole Tomlinson. Pennings (2-1) allowed just three hits in the final six innings. Connor Alberhasky (1-1) was the hard-luck loser, allowing just three hits over seven innings.

Game 2: Coe 3, Simpson 1
Ries no-hit Coe through four innings and brought a one-hitter into the sixth before Reuter and the Kohawks (4-6, 1-1 Iowa Conference) got going. A pair of singles and a walk loaded the bases for Reuter, whose two-RBI single gave Coe a 2-1 lead. He came around to score on a fielder's choice to extend the lead to 3-1.

Just as in game one, the Storm (7-4, 1-1) got going early in the nightcap. Chia walked to lead the game off and made it to third on back-to-back errors by second baseman Alec Zwanziger. Esdohr grounded into a double-play with the bases loaded, scoring Chia for the early 1-0 lead.

Reuter (2-1) gave up five hits in six innings to get the win and Jack Hoffmann held Simpson to two hits over the final three innings to earn his first save. Reis (1-2) went the distance for Simpson, striking out six in eight innings.

Up Next
Simpson hosts Loras in a four-game set on Friday and Saturday, March 28-29. Start time for Friday's doubleheader is set for 3:30 p.m. and Saturday's will get underway at 1 p.m. Both doubleheaders will follow the format of one, seven-inning game followed by a nine-inning game.