LOUISVILLE, KENTUCKY -- The 19th-ranked (D3baseball.com poll) Baldwin Wallace University baseball team split a doubleheader at host Spalding (Ky.) University at Derby City Field. The Yellow Jackets (2-3) won the first game, 10-7, but dropped the nightcap, 13-4.
In the first game, BW fell behind the Golden Eagles (2-2) by a 1-1 count before scoring a run in the top of the third inning to tie it at 1-1. After Spalding took a 2-1 advantage with a run in the bottom of the third, the Yellow Jacket offense got into high gear by scoring three times in the fifth and four more in the sixth to take an 8-2 advantage. Spalding scored twice in the bottom of the ninth to make the score interesting.
At the plate, BW outhit the Golden Eagles, 11-7. Junior catcher Alex Marcum (Granville) and All-Ohio Athletic Conference rightfielder Cole Nieto (Brunswick/ Cleveland St. Ignatius) led the way. Marcum was 3-for-5 with a double and a career-high five runs batted-in. Nieto was 3-for-5 with two runs scored and an RBI. In addition to being the winning pitcher, senior three-time All-OAC pitcher/ outfielder Mark Zimmerman (Akron/ Green) was 2-for-5 with two runs scored and an RBI.
On the mound, Zimmerman (1-0/ 1.50 earned run average) pitched the first six innings, allowed four hits, three runs (two earned), struck out 11 and walked three. He was followed to the mound by freshman lefthander Dominic Francis (Medina/ Brunswick) who tossed two-third of an inning and gave up a pair of runs before senior Paul Szabo (Richmond/ Notre Dame-Cathedral Latin) put out the fire with one-third of relief. Sophomore lefty Evan Lovick (Mentor) tossed the final two innings, allowed two hits and two runs (both earned).
In the nightcap, Spalding scored once in the top of the second, three more in the third and two in the sixth for a 6-0 lead. After BW made it 7-2 in the bottom of the seventh, the Golden Eagles "iced" the game with a six-run eighth. BW scored single runs from the sixth through ninth innings.
At the plate, BW was outhit, 13-8. Marcum was the only player to have multiple hits as he was 2-for-4 with a run scored. In addition, Nieto blasted his first home run of the season.
On the mound, freshman Danny Cody (Brecksville/ Brecksville-Broadview Heights) started and took the loss. He pitched two and one-third innings and was followed to the mound by seniors Tom Loeffler (Shaker Heights) and Brandon Cichocki (Walled Lake, Mich./ Central), freshmen Jack Raines (Uniontown/ Akron Archbishop Hoban) and Brandon Lekan (Strongsville) and senior Jerry Scholle (Hinckley/ Medina Highland).The six allowed 13 hits, 13 runs (11 earned), struck out nine and walked three. Cichocki pitched one and two-third innings, allowed one hit, an unearned run, struck out three and walked one. Scholle itched a hitless and scoreless ninth and struck out one.
The Yellow Jackets are back in action on Saturday, March 5 when BW will play a single game versus Anderson (Ind.) University at Spalding and en route on their annual Spring Break Trip. BW is heading south and will play six games in the State of Texas from March 7-12.
The northern schedule begins on Saturday, March 19 when BW travels to Terre Haute, Indiana to play single games against host Rose-Hulman (Ind.) Institute of Technology at 11 a.m. and versus Illinois Wesleyan at 2 p.m. The 2016 home-opener on Wednesday, March 23 versus Ohio Wesleyan University at Fisher Field at 4 p.m. The 2016 OAC schedule begins on Friday, March 25 with a doubleheader at OAC and Cleveland cross-town rival John Carroll University at 1 p.m.
The past two seasons, BW has appeared in the NCAA Division III National Tournament, including the school's first-ever Division III College World Series appearance in 2014.