HANOVER, N.H. — For the third time in four weeks, a Dartmouth pitcher has been selected as the Ivy League Pitcher of the Week. Senior Michael Johnson earned the distinction this time, as announced today by the league office, joining classmates Cole Sulser (March 5) and Kyle Hunter (March 19) as honorees. This is Johnson’s first weekly honor from the Ivy League in his career.
A 6-0, 180-pound left-hander from Georgetown, Mass., Johnson won both of his starts last week during Dartmouth’s spring break trip to Florida. First, he dominated North Dakota State — a team that won 40 games last year — striking out a career-high 12 batters over seven scoreless innings in the 6-0 triumph. Not a single Bison advanced past second base, and the southpaw needed just 91 pitches to record 21 outs. Five days later, he extended his scoreless inning streak to 16 when he shut Bradley out for his first five frames on the mound. He did give up two runs in the sixth, but the Big Green had a 5-0 lead at the time and went on to win, 7-4. Johnson finished the game having yielded the two runs on five hits and one walk in six stanzas while striking out six. In his 13 innings for the week, he surrendered 10 hits and two walks while fanning 18.
Johnson sports a stellar 1.89 ERA on the season and is among the top 40 nationally in strikeouts per nine innings (10.9). He has won all three of his starts and now has a career record of 11-2 for a winning percentage of .846, the third best all-time at Dartmouth.
Earning spots on the weekly honor roll were sophomore third baseman Nick Lombardi who hit .438 (7-for-16) with five extra-base hits and four RBIs; freshman outfielder Nick Ruppert who hit .333 (7-for-21) and reached base at a .444 clip while scoring five runs in the six games; and freshman right-hander Michael Danielak who tossed five innings of no-hit, no-run relief with five strikeouts.
Dartmouth (11-1) will play its home opener on Wednesday against Siena (6-14) at 3 p.m. The Big Green have won 11 of their last 12 home openers and 17 of 23 under head coach Bob Whalen, plus have a 55-7 record (.887) at Red Rolfe Field at Biondi Park since the stadium seating was built and FieldTurf was installed prior to the 2009 season. It is the second-best home winning percentage at the Division I level during that time, trailing only Manhattan’s 58-5 (.921).
Fans can watch and/or listen to the game online via Big Green Insider on the official website of Dartmouth athletics, DartmouthSports.com. The video is available by subscription while the audio broadcast is free featuring Wayne Young ’72 calling the action.