TUCSON, Ariz. – Junior Ryan Earle recorded two doubles and a triple, and worked out of a bases-loaded jam in the ninth for the Wesleyan University baseball team on Sunday, as the Cardinals raced out to a 7-1 lead in the fourth inning, and then held off a late surge by Oberlin to claim an 8-6 victory in Tucson, Ariz.
HOW IT HAPPENED:
- In the bottom of the ninth, the Yeomen (3-6) put a pair of runners in scoring position with one out, as freshman Alexis Castillo led off with a walk, and then freshman pinch runner Ben Reed advanced to third on a double down the right-field line by senior Quin Butler. Senior Milo Sklar loaded the bases by drawing a walk off Earle, and junior Ian Dinsmore stepped up to the plate as the tying run. The Cogan Station, Pa. native tallied an RBI single to center, and then Earle fired back by striking out senior Derek Martin looking. Sophomore Amari Newman kept Oberlin's hopes of a dramatic comeback alive, driving an RBI single up the middle, cutting the deficit to 8-6, and placing the tying run on second and the game-winning runner on first. Earle then clinched the game for Wesleyan, earning the save by forcing freshman Lawrence Hamilton to ground into a force out at second.
- The Cardinals (6-1) held a 2-1 lead at the end of three innings, and then the squad utilized a five-run performance in the fourth to extend its cushion to six runs.
- Sophomore Jonny Corning catapulted the Cardinals in the sixth, knocking a one-out triple to center. He then ran the final 90 feet home during the next at-bat on an RBI triple to right by Earle. Two batters later, sophomore Chase Pratt drove a fly ball to center, and Earle retreated to third and tagged up, as he gave the Cardinals a 4-1 lead on the sacrifice fly. Wesleyan tallied three more runs with two down in the frame thanks to RBI singles by sophomore Tanner Fulkerson and junior Danny Rose, and a one-run triple by sophomore Jake Alonzo.
- Wesleyan appeared to be in a solid position, but Oberlin kept swinging the bats, and scored five of the final six runs. The Yeomen cut the deficit to four behind a two-run sixth, with senior Sklar scoring on a sacrifice fly to center by junior Brendan Mapes, and then Hamilton snuck a two-out RBI single through the left side, trimming the deficit to 7-3.
- The Cardinals added another run to their total in the eighth, doing all the damage with two down. Senior Matt Jeye recorded a single up the middle, and crossed home on the next at-bat when Pratt drilled an RBI triple down the right-field line.
- Oberlin grabbed another run in the bottom of the eighth, shaving the Cardinals lead to 8-4 heading into the final inning, as Hamilton singled to center, allowing Mapes to score from second with an unearned run.
- Wesleyan started the scoring with a two-run effort in the third behind a one-out RBI single by Pratt to right-center, and a two-out, RBI walk with the bases juiced by Alonzo. The Yeomen responded with a run in the bottom half of the frame, as Sklar contributed with an RBI single to shortstop.
INSIDE THE NUMBERS:
- Jeye registered a 3-for-4 performance at the plate, to go along with three runs scored for the Cardinals, while Pratt went 2-for-4 with a trio of RBIs, and Rose tallied a 2-for-3 effort with an RBI and a run scored. Wesleyan held a 14-8 advantage in hits.
- For the Yeomen, Dinsmore went 2-for-5 with an RBI and a run, while Hamilton also posted a 2-for-5 performance, along with a pair of RBIs.
- Sophomore starting pitcher Alec Olmstead (1-0) earned the win on the mound for Wesleyan, going six strong innings, giving up three runs on three hits, while walking seven and striking out five.
- Junior starting pitcher Jack Reiss (0-1) was tagged with the loss for Oberlin, giving up seven runs on hits in four innings. The Yeomen received strong relief pitching from Kotaro Kajita, Bradley Jamison, Alexander Amorello and Brandon Harlan, as they only gave up one run during the final five frames.
- The Cardinals will take the field on Tuesday for a doubleheader agaist Allegheny, as game times are set for 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. in Tucson, Ariz., and 1 and 4 p.m., respectively, on the East Coast.