Jeff Dsida ‘14 set the tone today for the Carleton College baseball squad (12-14, 2-8 MIAC), homering to straightaway centerfield on the first pitch of the Knights’ first turn at bat. Carleton went on to sweep the Bethel University Royals (19-10, 6-6 MIAC) by scores of 5-4 and 8-4 to pick up their first conference victories of the season. Pitching on only two days rest, senior Henry Rownd ‘13 went the distance for the Knights in the first game, grabbing his third win of the season. Hayden Tsutsui ‘16 led the Carleton offense, hitting a combined 4-for-6 on the day with three runs and an RBI.
After Bethel pushed across a run in the top of the first, Dsida’s second roundtripper of the season immediately knotted the score at 1-1. Later in the frame, Tsutsui singled, stole second, and was eventually pushed home on a Kevin Johnson ‘14 groundout. The Knights tallied three more runs in the next inning thanks to RBIs by Tsutsui and David Stillerman ‘14.
With Carleton leading 5-2, the Royals made it interesting with a pair of unearned runs in the sixth, but Rownd maintained his composure and retired Royal leadoff hitter David Freed on a flyout to center field and finished off Bethel 1-2-3 in the seventh.
Rownd scattered seven hits over his 7.0 innings, permitting just one earned run with two walks and five strikeouts.
Jack Violetta ‘16 got the starting nod in game two and surrendered an opening-inning run before settling in. He permitted just the single tally on two hits over 3.0 innings.
Game two saw Bethel send Matt Rowley, the reigning MIAC Player-of-the Year, to the bump sporting a perfect 5-0 record on the year. After breezing through the first four Carleton batters, Rowley locked in an extended battle with Johnson, and the Knight second baseman earned a sharp single to center. That opened the door for the Knights. After a failed suicide squeeze attempt later in the second inning, Carleton picked up a pair of easy two-out runs without even needing to swing the bat. Hikaru Mizuno ‘16 drew a bases loaded walk and Dsida was hit by a pitch to force home another tally.
After a perfect first inning of relief, Jackson Tears ‘14 pitched himself into a jam in the fifth by loading the bases with none out. A double play and lineout later, the best the Royals could manage was just one run.
Carleton and Bethel found themselves locked at 2-2 in the bottom of the fifth. Again, the Knights used small ball and broke open the game. After Dsida singled, Stillerman bunted for a base hit, and Tsutsui followed with a bunt single of his own. The Royals helped out the Carleton cause, throwing a wild pitch and committing a costly throwing error. Cody Bohlman ‘16 doubled in another run, and when the dust settled, the Knights finished the frame leading, 7-2.
All told, the Knights solved Rowley—who entered the contest with a MIAC-best 1.50 ERA—for six runs on six hits, three hit batters and two walks over 4.1 frames.
Carleton expanded the lead to 8-2 an inning later when Tsutsui tripled to deep right centerfield and trotted home on Ray Yong’s ‘14 sacrifice fly.
Bethel fought to extend the game, touching reliever Jukie Tsai ‘14 for two runs. With runners on first and second and two outs, senior Ted Harmon ‘13 emerged from the bullpen and got the final out of the game, earning his second career save.