OBERLIN, OHIO -- The Baldwin Wallace University baseball split an Ohio Athletic Conference doubleheader with rival Heidelberg University at Oberlin College. The 16th-ranked Student Princes won the first game, 10-8, and the Yellow Jackets won captured the nightcap, 7-5. The game was moved to Oberlin due to poor playing conditions at Heritage Field at BW. This also was the OAC opener for each team.
With its split, the Yellow Jackets are now 10-6 overall and 1-1 in the OAC. Heidelberg is now 13-3 overall and 1-1 in the OAC.
In the first game, Heidelberg gained a 2-0 lead in the top of the second and BW came back with a run of its own in the bottom of the frame to make it 2-1. The Yellow Jackets gained a 3-2 lead with two runs in the third and grabbed a 7-1 lead with five in the fifth. But the Student Princes regained a 9-7 lead with a seven-run sixth. BW stung back for a run in the eighth to make it 9-8, and had a chance to gain the lead with a runner of second and no outs, but a trikeout and double play ended the threat. Heidelberg added its final run in the ninth. In the bottom of the ninth, BW had runners at first and second base before the Princes got the final out.
At the plate, junior shortstop Eric Murphy (Brook Park/ Midpark), sophomore designated hitter Hunter Handel (Akron/ Green) and junior rightfielder Alex Green (Pickerington/ North) each had three hits. Murphy and sophomore All-OAC 2B Mark Zimmerman (Akron/ Green) each scored two runs and Murphy, Handel and Green each had a pair of runs batted-in (RBI).
On the mound, sophomore Alex Albright (North Royalton) started and pitched the first five-plus innings, allowed eight base hits and five runs (four earned), struck out two and walked one. He left with a 7-5 lead. He was replaced by senior Dylan Fodor (Twinsburg), who picked up the loss and evened his reciord this season at 1-1. Senior Cory Waite (Willoughby/ South) folowed Fodor and tossed a strong three and two-third innings of relief, allowed three hits, two runs (both unearned), struck out one and walked one.
In the nightcap, the Student Princes gained a 1-0 in the top half of the first inning and the Yellow Jackets tied the game 1-1 in the bottom half of the inning. Heidelberg regained the lead in the third inning with three runs and added another in the fifth for a 5-1 advantage. BW cut the Heidelberg lead by scoring two runs in the bottom of the fifth inning to make it 5-3. BW added two runs in the seventh to tie it at 5-5 and two more in the eighth to take a 7-5 advantage and earn the split.
At the plate, Green and Zimmerman led the way with two hits each, including back-to-back doubles in the eighth inning that plated the go-ahead and insuranceruns. Zimmerman and senior All-OAC and Acaemic All-OAC 3B Brad Gugliotta (Twinsburg) each scored twice and Green had two more RBI.
On the mound, senior Jon Capadona (North Royalton) started and pitched three innings, gave up up three hits and three earned runs and struck out two. Freshman Logan Heffernan (Lebanon), came in and tossed two innings, gave up one run and struck out one. Sophomore Matt Wittles (Lyndhurst / Brush) pitched two innings, did not allow a hit or run, struck out three and walked one. Sophomore closer Brandon Cichocki (Walled Lake, Mich./ Central) pitched the eighth and ninth innings, did not give up a hit or walk and struck out the side in the eighth to earn the win and improve to 1-0 overall.
BW resumes northern play on Wednesday, March 26 when the Yellow Jackets travel to Dayton, Ohio to play NCAA Division I the University of Dayton in a single, nine-inning game at 4:00 p.m. BW also travels to Marietta, Ohio on Saturday, March 29 for an OAC doubleheader against 11th-ranked Marietta College at Pioneer Park at 1:00 p.m.
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