Baseball 2014 Game Highlight
05/08/2014 - CACC Tournament #5 Dominican
SUBJECT: Top Seeded Wilmington Baseball Knocked To Loser’s Bracket But Advances in CACC Tournament
Top seeded Wilmington University began Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference Tournament play with a loss to fifth seeded Dominican, 5-4, but kept their four-peat hopes alive with a win over sixth seeded Post, 5-2, on Thursday afternoon at Wilson Field.
The game one loss knocked the Wildcats (33-8-1 overall) into the losers’ bracket and forced them to play a second game on Thursday. They survived and advanced in the afternoon game, using late runs to scoot by the Eagles (17-22-1 overall) to live to play another day.
In the opener, the Wildcats scored first against Dominican (22-22 overall), scoring the first run of the game in the first inning after a two-out rally. Josh Hampton doubled just inside the third base bag with two-outs and no one on before a pair of wild pitches allowed Hampton to come around and score.
In the third, the Wildcats put two runners into scoring position with one out in the inning, and a sacrifice fly by Matt Lopes gave the home team a 2-0 lead after three innings.
But the bats came out in the fourth inning for the Chargers, as they collected four hits and were aided by a leadoff walk and an error in the inning to score three runs and take a 3-2 lead.
Josh Swirchak doubled to lead off the fifth inning for the Wildcats before coming around to score on an RBI single from Hampton to tie the game.
In the seventh inning, the Chargers regained the lead after loading the bases with only one out. Jonathan Martinez singled off Nick Marics to bring in the go-ahead run before an RBI groundout by Robert Alonso pushed the Dominican lead to 5-3.
With two outs in the seventh, the Wildcats received three straight singles by Frank Samluk, Hampton, and Matt Lopes, closing the gap to 5-4.
The Wildcats left two batters on in the eighth and another runner on in the ninth before Peter Martinez closed the door with a save in the ninth inning.
Now in desperation mode, the Wildcats fell behind Post in the elimination game after the top of the second before a Mike Annone double to left center allowed Joe Marciano to score the tying run.
Another Lopes sacrifice fly gave the Wildcats a brief 2-1 lead in the third before the Eagles tied the game on a squeeze play in the top of the fourth.
Tied until the sixth, Wildcat starter Ray Gambone pushed the momentum in favor of the Wildcats after getting out of a bases loaded, one-out jam by striking out a batter for the second out and inducing a foul out on the third base side to escape the inning.
In the home half, Annone was at it again with two outs, as he triple to the wall in right center, chasing Marciano all the way from first for the go-ahead and eventual game-winning RBI.
The Wildcats tacked on two more insurance runs in the bottom of the seventh as Hampton singled through the left side to score Jon Castro from third. Lopes rounded out the scoring for the afternoon with his third sacrifice fly of the day, bringing home Swirchak to take a 5-2 lead.
Tyler Fries came on in the top of the ninth and struck out two batters before inducing a ground out to Hampton at third for the final out of the game and keeping the Wildcats alive.
Hampton batted 5-for-7 on the day, 4-for-5 against Dominican, knocking in two while scoring a run. Lopes collected four RBI in the two games combined while Annone went 2-for-4 with two RBI against Post.
Gambone (4-2) earned the win in the nightcap, striking out six in six innings of work, allowing two runs (one earned) on seven hits. Fries picked up his seventh save of the season. Jay Kluka (3-2) took the loss in the first game, giving up two runs on two walks and a hit in a third of an inning.
The Wildcats will now play the loser of the winner’s bracket game between second seeded Felician and fifth seeded Dominican. That game is scheduled for an 11 a.m. start at Wilson Field followed by the Wildcats’ game at approximately 2:30 p.m.