The Harvard baseball team can try to erase the 15 ugly losses that mar its record, or it can try to keep from making the same mistakes over and over and over...
Yesterday, at Soldier's Field, the squad chose the latter option, sweeping a makeup doubleheader against Navy. The Crimson (6-15 Overall, 2-6 EIBL) opened the day with a 3-1 victory, completing the afternoon with an extra-inning 9-7 win.
After yielding a first-inning run, Crimson pitcher Mike "Closed" Dorrington (2-2) shut out the Midshipmen in the opener. In one of his finest performances this season, Dorrington went the seven-inning distance with the help of a flawless defense.
And to top it off, Dorrington had to overcome the "tenth" man on the Midshipmen's roster--the flu.
"I wasn't at full strength, but I was still able to get ahead in the count with my fastball," Dorrington said.
During the fifth inning, play was halted while Dorrington threw up on the sideline. The standout Crimson hurler then returned to the game, closing the inning with two strikeouts.
"All year it has been a story of good hitting and no pitching or good pitching and a batting slump," Dorrington said. "We were finally able to put together a sound game, both offensively and defensively."
Harvard couldn't keep Navy bats at bay in the second game, as the Midshipmen exploded for four runs in the top of the fifth inning to grab a 7-3 lead. Harvard answered in the bottom of the sixth with a four-run tally of its own.
Tom Hurly lasted nearly five innings for Harvard before being replaced by Sean Johnston. Todd Forman pitched in the extra innings for the win.
Crimson outfielder Dan "Radar" Scanlan had no problems picking up Midshipmen fastballs in either game. Scanlan went 5-8 on the day, with two doubles and several clutch hits.
The Crimson came out on top of the extra-inning contest by virtue of a walk. Harvard second baseman Jim Mrowka started the ninth inning with a single, advanced to second on a sacrifice, and moved to third on a wild pitch. With one out, Navy decided to walk the bases full, which meant bypassing the bottom of the order to get to Harvard Captain Tom Konjoyan.
"Tactically, walking the eighth and ninth batters was the right thing for Navy to do," Konjoyan said. "But that brought the top of the order to the plate--me."
Konjoyan walked to score the winning run.
"I was offended. Mrowka was getting home," Konjoyan said, irked that Navy underestimated his hitting prowess.