When the cloud of red clay settled in Lubbock, Texas, one thing was certain—it was a wild opening weekend for the Harvard baseball team.
A tripleheader of slugfests on Saturday saw the Crimson set all-time records for runs scored and runs allowed, and a pitching gem yesterday solidified Harvard’s rotation.
But the extraordinary weekend ended with Harvard a very ordinary 2-2, after sweeping a pair of games with Air Force and falling twice to Texas Tech.
Sophomore Frank Herrmann (1-0)—who pitched all of three innings last season—earned the complete game victory in the Crimson’s 5-1 win over Air Force yesterday, calming the storm of scoring enveloping Harvard.
“Yeah, I was a little bit [nervous],” Herrmann said.
“The first couple of games had been like a video game. We had been putting up football scores. But the guys just told me to go out there and throw strikes and that everything would work out...and it did.”
In its first three games—all played on Saturday—the Crimson allowed a combined 68 runs, including 30 in a 30-8 loss to Texas Tech Saturday night.
That came after opening its season with a 25-20 monstrosity of a win over Air Force (4-8) on Saturday morning.
HARVARD 5, AIR FORCE 1
Herrmann scattered eight hits and struck out six batters over nine innings in his first career start to earn the win.
“He looked really good,” junior catcher Schuyler Mann said. “His velocity was good. His curve ball and change up were very good.”
Playing as the home team, Harvard jumped out to an early 2-0 lead in the bottom of the first.
A walk by sophomore second baseman Zak Farkes and a double by senior first baseman Trey Hendricks put runners on second and third for sophomore third baseman Josh Klimkiewicz. Klimkiewicz drove in both runs with a single to left field.
Harvard pushed a run across the plate in both the third and fifth innings to raise its lead to 4-0, before the Falcons finally got to Herrmann in the eight inning.
Herrmann hit Air Force’s leadoff batter Josh Wolfram to open the frame. Wolfram advanced on a single and a sacrifice fly, then scored on a balk to break up the shoutout.