MISHAWAKA, Ind. – Joe Moran and Noah Huseman turned in dominant starts on the mound for Taylor in Friday’s doubleheader at Bethel, leading the Trojans to a pair of shutout victories and extending their current win streak to 10 with 6-0 and 1-0 victories over the Pilots.
TU’s 10-game win streak marks the program’s longest since ripping off 11-straight victories from April 11 through 23 of 2016 and rattling off 16 in a row from April 13 through May 9 of 2013.
The back-to-back shutout victories on Friday extended Taylor’s current stretch of 20-straight innings without allowing a run and were the Trojans’ first back-to-back shutouts since the program kept Indiana Wesleyan off the scoreboard in both ends of a doubleheader sweep on April 23 of 2016.
It was all Moran in the opener, as the senior righty fired seven shutout frames with just six hits and one walk allowed in the 6-0 victory. Moran (5-2) secured his fifth win of the season on the bump and fanned 10 hitters in his longest outing of the season and his second with double-digit whiffs.
Moran also took care of all the offense the Trojans would need, leading off the second inning with a home run and adding a two-run blast in the ninth to fuel a three-run rally that doubled the TU advantage.
Moran finished 2-4 at the plate with the two dingers and three runs batted in. Matt Dutkowski also collected two hits with one double and Nick Rusche had one double. Conner Crawford finished with two runs scored, two stolen bases and provided the defensive gem of the contest by throwing out a runner at the plate from right field in the second inning.
Huseman (3-0) took the baton from Moran in the nightcap, going the distance in the seven-inning contest for his first collegiate shutout. The junior righty struck out seven and walked two in the two-hit gem, allowing only three balls out of the infield off BU bats and sitting down 12 of the final 13 Pilot hitters to slam the door.
Taylor got the only run of the game in the top of the seventh, as TJ Bass delivered a one-out single before being replaced on the bases by Jonathan Foster, who promptly stole second. Foster tagged and moved to third on a fly out and score the eventual game-winner on a passed ball.
The two wins move Taylor to 17-6 overall and 6-0 in Crossroads League play. The 6-0 league start marks TU’s best unbeaten start against league foes since winning its first 21 league outings during the 2011 campaign.
The Taylor pitching has stifled opposing lineups in those six wins, posting a staff earned-run average of 1.17 with a .163 batting average against and 67 strikeouts to just eight walks over 46 innings.
TU (17-6, 6-0 CL) will look to stay hot when it finishes its four-game series at Bethel (4-14, 1-5 CL) on Saturday, with a doubleheader starting at noon.