Skip to navigation Skip to content Skip to footer

BW Baseball Beats JCU in OAC Tourney to Force Title Game

Brad Gugliotta (Photo Courtesy of Ken Gillissie)
Brad Gugliotta (Photo Courtesy of Ken Gillissie)
MARIETTA, Ohio -- The Baldwin Wallace University baseball team defeated Ohio Athletic Conference and Cleveland cross-town rival John Carroll University, 10-9, today in the first of two championship games at the 2014 OAC Tournament at Pioneer Park in Don Schaly Stadium. BW must beat JCU in the nightcap to claim its first OAC title since 1985 when it also came through the loser's bracket to win the crown. 
With its win, BW, ranked fourth in the Mideast Region of Division III, is 25-17 overall. With its loss, JCU, ranked seventh in the Mideast Region, is 23-15 overall.
BW jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the top of the second inning as senior catcher Joe Hiller (Twinsburg) walked and moved to second base on a single by junior shortstop Eric Murphy (Brook Park/Middleburg Heights Midpark). After both runners moved up on a passed ball, Hiller scored when junior right-fielder Alex Green (Pickerington/North) singled off of the glove of the pitcher, and Murphy scored on a single by All-OAC and Academic All-OAC third baseman Brad Gugliotta (Twinsburg).
BW made it 3-0 in the top of the third when Hiller reached on an infield single, stole second, moved to third on a fly out and scored on a wild pitch. The lead grew to 6-0 in the fourth when the Yellow Jackets scored three times on three base hits, a JCU error and a sacrifice fly.
After JCU cut the deficit to 6-2 with two runs in the bottom of the fourth via a two-run home run, BW got a run back in the top of the fifth to lead 7-2 when sophomore center-fielder John Taylor (Stow/Hudson) walked, stole second base and scored on a Green single.
That's when JCU began its comeback.
JCU closed the gap to 7-3 in the bottom of the fifth on a triple and a run-scoring ground out. The Blue Streaks drew to 7-6 with three more runs in the bottom of the sixth with four hits and two costly Yellow Jacket errors. JCU gained its first lead with three runs in the bottom of the seventh via a long three-run homer for a 9-7 lead.

In the top of the ninth following a 2:15 rain delay, BW had the bases loaded with two outs and freshman pinch hitter Cole Nieto (Brunswick/Cleveland St. Igantius) drew a walk to force home a run and make it a 9-8 game. That is when Green stepped to the plate and singled to score junior pinch runner Anthony Eder (Cuyahoga Heights) with the tying run and junior left-fielder Zach Ferster (Olmsted Falls) with the go-ahead run for a 10-9 lead.

In the bottom of the ninth, staff ace and senior right-hander Cory Waite (Willoughby/South) pitched his second scoreless inning to claim the win.

At the plate, BW was led by Gugliotta and Green. Gugliotta was 5-for-6 with a run scored and a run batted-in (RBI). Green was 4-for-5 with a run scored, the game-winning hit and four RBI.

On the mound, senior left-hander Cory Durbin (Canton/GlenOak) started and pitched the first five and two-third innings, allowed 10 base hits, six runs (four earned) and struck out two JCU hitters. He left with a 7-6 lead. He was followed by senior righty Dylan Fodor (Twinsburg) who got the final out of the sixth. Sophomore right-handed pitcher Matt Wittels (Lyndhurst/Brush) began the seventh and allowed one hit and an earned run and got one out.  Sophomore right-hander Connor Murphy (Westford, Mass./Northeast) followed Wittels and allowed two hits and two runs. Waite pitched a scoreless eighth and ninth to improve to 6-1 overall.

The winner of the OAC Tournament receives the league's automatic berth in this year's NCAA Division III National Tournament which starts next week. To date, BW has the credentials to receive a berth. Against ranked teams in the Mideast, BW is 2-2 versus No. 1 Marietta, 2-1 versus No. 2 Heidelberg, 1-1 versus No. 3 Case Western Reserve University, BW is No. 4, 1-0 versus No. 5 The College of Wooster, 2-0 versus No. 6 LaRoche (Pa.) College, 1-2 versus No. 7 JCU and 1-1 versus No. 9 Ohio Northern University.

please contact Sports Information Director Kevin Ruple by telephone at 440-826-2327 and e-mail at or Assistant SID Jeff Miller by phone at 440-826-2780 and email at Fans can access the latest BW athletics information at and we invite you to join us on Facebook at and Twitter at