Taylor, Michigan – Henry Ford College hosted the iCASE Baseball Academy at Papp Park, but treated them nicer off the field than between the lines, as the Hawks swept the doubleheader with convincing 14-4 and 8-4 victories over the Huskies. The games were lucky to have been played, as it poured rain all of the previous day and night, forcing cancellation of iCASE’s scheduled game against Madonna University on Friday, and delaying Saturday’s twin-bill by four hours.
“This was yet another chance for the iCASE players to be exposed to another US college campus and program, and there is no shame in losing to older, bigger, stronger players,” summarized iCASE field manager/GM Tom Valcke.
“Playing teams like this only make us better, but the icing on today’s cake was that their head coach, Steven Brown, who magically whipped a quagmire into a playable field in just a few hours, showed interest in three of our players following the games.”
Down 5-0 entering the bottom of the third inning in game one, Brody Higgs got the iCASE offense going with a single to centre field. Ricardo Suarez drove a base hit up the middle to make it first and third, and Evan Lindsay hit a sacrifice fly to deep left to score Higgs. Chris Iltshishin led off the seventh with his third hit of the game, a single through the hole at short, and scored on Colton Gill’s line drive double to the left field gap. Higgs singled to left to plate Gill, was moved to second by Yanik Leroux, and scored when Jules Herrell drove a shot to left field.
In the nightcap, Lindsay toed the rubber and held the deep Hawks offense to one run over four innings, but the hosts then unloaded for seven more runs over the final three frames. iCASE answered with one run in the sixth when Leroux and Suarez led off with back-to-back walks, and Iltshishin drove a single to left to bring home Leroux. The Huskies mounted a rally in the seventh, halving the lead to 8-4 on consecutive hits by Jacob Babstock, Brady Schnarr, Leroux, Higgs and Suarez, but that ended the scoring.
The losses evened iCASE’s Fall record at 7-7, with the following weekend (Thanksgiving) off, and a tour of Eastern Michigan University paired with the USSSA Fall Tournament to follow on the October 18-20 weekend.