ZURICH, SWITZERLAND -- The Johns Hopkins baseball team captured the tournament title at the fifth annual Alpine Cup with three wins in three days over the weekend. After a lopsided victory to open the tournament on Friday, June 24, the Blue Jays picked up a pair of one-run victories on Sunday, June 26 to claim the championship.
Making an international tour for the 11th time under head coach Bob Babb, the Blue Jays opened play in the tournament against the Swiss National Team and scored an 11-1 victory. Nick Burns pitched five shutout innings while striking out five and allowing just three singles to pick up the win. A three-run home run from Frank Clara, a three-hit game by Chris DeGiacomo and four runs scored by Mike Smith led the way offensively for Johns Hopkins.
After rain eliminated all but an inning and half of Hopkins' next game against the Dominican All-Star Team on Saturday, the Blue Jays were forced to play twice on Sunday.
Picking up where they left off against the Dominican All-Stars, the Blue Jays scored three times in the second inning on the strength of three straight bases-loaded walks and added a run in the fourth on a run-scoring single from Charlie Carroll.
The Dominicans used four straight hits in the sixth to plate three runs to draw within 4-3, but Josh Hedjka came on in relief of Preston Betz and then turned it over to John Donohue in the seventh to nail down the victory. Betz sailed through the first five innings and got the win and Donohue picked up the save.
In what turned out to be the championship game, the Blue Jays jumped to a 2-0 lead on the Zurich Padres, only to have the Padres scored three runs in the third to grab a 3-2 lead. Single runs in the fifth and sixth innings gave Hopkins the lead for good as the Padres managed just a single run off reliever Harrison Folk over the final three innings as the Blue Jays grabbed the 5-4 victory.
Conor Reynolds collected a pair of hits and Joe Conlon added two RBIs in the win over the Padres, a team comprised of former professional players from around the world.
With the baseball portion of the trip behind them, a majority of the team, coaching staff, family and friends embarked on a river cruise on the Danube on Monday. Follow the rest of the team's journey on the official twitter page of Hopkins baseball: @JHUBaseball.