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Baseball Opens OAC Play with Sweep of Muskingum

Photo by Randy Sarvis
Photo by Randy Sarvis


WILMINGTON, Ohio – The Wilmington College baseball team opened Ohio Athletic Conference (OAC) play by sweeping Muskingum University on Saturday, winning game one 3-2 and game two 9-7 at Tewksbury-Delaney Field.

In the game win victory, Lance Fleischman struck out 10 batters to earn a complete-game victory. Muskingum did plate a single run in second inning, on a sacrifice fly, and the fourth, on an RBI-single Marc Ibarra. Fleischman would allow just three more hits the rest of the game, however, setting up Wilmington's offense to take advantage.

The Quakers did just that in the bottom of the fifth as Gage Bley hit a sacrifice fly to center field that scored Mason Walker. The very next batter, Luke Kleindl, scored Antonio Miller with an RBI-single to right field that tied the game 2-2.

Both teams would get runners in scoring position in the sixth and seventh innings, but couldn't deliver the go-ahead hit. Fleischman sat down the Fighting Muskies in order in the top of the eighth, and his offense responded as Kleindl got to second base after a walk and a sacrifice bunt put down by Kasey Bottorff. A Shane Hale single to left field that scored the game-winning run in Kleindl.

"Game one was dictated by Lance Fleischman, who had great tempo on the mount," Head Baseball Coach Tony Vittorio said. "It was great to see Shane Hale deliver that go-ahead, RBI-single on a ball that wasn't quite squared up. He's battled injury and it was nice to get him in the lineup today."

Miller and Bottorff finished 2-for-3 for Wilmington while Walker posted a 2-for-4 performance. Miller swiped two bases while Nick Silvis and Jake Hyatt both stole one base. Brett Carson tallied a multi-hit game for Muskingum while Josh Bigrigg took the loss in relief.

In game two, Wilmington scored runs in the first four innings including RBI hits from Silvis, Hale, Gage Bley and Joe Legin in the first two innings and Mason Walker in the fourth. After starter Thomas Hueber was pulled in the first, Jarett Trautman, Hueber's replacement, worked through the first four innings allowing two runs. The Quakers, who led 8-2 after four, surrendered four runs in the top of the fifth. The Muskies added another in the sixth to get within a single run.

A Hale single to left field that scored Jake Hyatt pushed Wilmington's lead back to two (9-7) and Jared Ferenchak, who entered the game in the fifth, closed the door to earn the save.

Trautman allowed five earned runs with four walks in 4.2 innings pitched to earn his first win of the year. Ferenchak scattered five hits and allowed one earned run over the final 4.1 innings. Holden Martin took the loss for Muskingum allowing five earned runs and recording as many outs.

Bley finished game two 4-for-5 with three runs scored and an RBI while Hyatt added a 3-for-4 performance with and RBI and two runs scored. Hale and Legin also finished with multi-hit games.

Five different Muskies tallied two hits in defeat.

"We got the lead and played ahead in game two," Vittorio said. "Our pitching staff battled in that game."

Wilmington (5-11, 2-0 OAC) steps out of conference play to host Hanover College tomorrow (Sunday) in a doubleheader scheduled to begin at 1 p.m.