RICHMOND, Indiana – The Wilmington College baseball concludes its season-opening series with a pair of close losses to Earlham College in the Quaker Bowl rivarly on Sunday, falling 5-2 in game one and 2-1 in the nightcap.
Matt Oney took the loss despite coming one out away from a quality start. Earlham scored an unearned run in the first, but Oney stranded multiple runners in both the fourth and fifth innings. Wilmington battled back to tie the game 1-1 in the top of the sixth after Nick Silvis doubled and was driven home by Joey Allinder.
"Matt [Oney] pitched well for us," Head Baseball Coach Dan Cleaver said. "He was one out away from a quality start with two strikes on the hitter, and just made one bad pitch."
Earlham added three runs in the bottom of the sixth to take a 4-1 lead it would not relinquish. Jake Hyatt did launch his first home run of the season, a blast over the left field wall of Sadler Stadium to lead-off the seventh inning. The hosts answered with a run in the eighth.
Wilmington finished with seven hits in game one by seven different players. Along with Hyatt's home run, Silvis and Shane Hale also had an extra-base hit.
"We've been competitive in three games, but we've need to get over the hump," said Cleaver. "We need to execute better and play smarter."
Kyle Gorman earned the win for Earlham, pitching seven innings and striking out six batters. The hosts had 10 hits in the victory.
In game two, both starting pitchers pitched six innings and earned quality starts. Jarrett Trautman, who allowed a single unearned run in the second, fanned three batters and allowed just one hit in his season debut. Earlham's Joey Gerbus also allowed one earned run, on a Chua single in the sixth inning, with three strikeouts.
Wilmington had chances to take the lead in the seventh and ninth inning, but an attempted steal failed in the seventh and a groundout stranded runner at second and third in the ninth. The Fightin' Quakers nearly extended the game to extra innings, but a walk and a two-out single gave Earlham the victory and series sweep in walk-off fashion.
Chua was the only individual on both sides to record two hits, finishing 2-for-4 with an RBI. Wilmington's pitching staff held Earlham to just two hits in the game.
Wilmington (0-4) will travel south for its spring trip to Florida beginning next Sunday.