BEAR, DELAWARE – The Owls faced a tumultuous week after three of their games were cancelled. Heading south to Delaware, Temple had an unbeknown week to prep for their next matchup against Hartford.
Coming off a solid outing against Niagara, Temple starter Matt Hockenberry got in trouble early letting up an RBI double in the first to Hartford catcher Billy Walker. Hartford SP Brian Hunter put the Owls on lock down early letting up no hits through his first three innings.
The errors kept coming for the Owls in the third as three two out runs scored in the inning via two Temple errors and a RBI single. With the score 4-0, Butler was in cruise control on the mound until the fourth. After 1B Ryan Amaro was hit by a pitch, he advanced to second on a passed ball and set up a Jimmy Kerrigan double to put two men in scoring position. Catcher Andrew Nist hit home the opening run for Temple with a sac fly and LF Frank D’Agostino came up with the clutch two out single to cut the lead in half.
After a 1-2-3 inning by Hockenberry, the Owls rewarded their starter with Derek Peterson knocking home the third run on another sac fly. Hunter was pulled for the Hawks after letting the first two runners reach base and the Peterson RBI was the only blemish in the inning. To the sixth, D’Agostino once again proved why he’s the man in left with a double to put two men on for the Owls with two outs. SS Josh Mason comes up with two out and knocks home the tying run as Temple comes back four down.
2B Reyn Sugai has shown drastic improvement after being inserted into the leadoff slot and thanked the coaching staff as he doubles to center as D’Agostino scores. The Owls take the lead 5-4 as the unlikely power source comes up big.
Let’s not forget about the TU ace. Hockenberry got back to back 1 2 3 innings in the seventh and eighth as Temple had the one run lead heading into the ninth. With two men on and two down, Temple callled to the pen for Zach Batchelor. The closer did his usual damage and got the final Hartford hitter to fly out and end the threat as the Owls take the contest 5-4.
Hockenberry (2-0) went 8.2 masterful innings letting up five hits and four unearned runs to go along with his six strikeouts. D’Agostino led the Owls at the plate going 3-4. Sam McKay (2-1) picks up the loss in relief going 2.0 innings letting up two crucial two out runs in the sixth.
The Owls (4-8) play a doubleheader against Saint Peter’s Sunday.