Wed, May. 8, 2013 - [Baseball]
The Loras College baseball team went 1-3 against the Buena Vista Beavers in the rain delayed final series of the 2013 regular season on Sunday and Monday. When the dust settled on the final weekend, Loras stood at sixth in the standings and will play Buena Vista – the #3 seed – at 1:00 PM on Thursday in Cedar Rapids in the first round of the 2013 Iowa Conference Tournament.
In Game 1, Adam Schwoebel battled Buena Vista starter Jon Ringblom over the first three innings before the Beavers went to the bullpen. Each team logged three hits total. The Buena Vista staff logged eight strikeouts to Schwoebel's seven, but the difference on the scoreboard came in the third inning. The Beavers moved a pair of singles into scoring position with a sacrifice bunt and then a wild pitch brought in the game's only run. Loras put runners in scoring position twice over the next four innings but were unable to push across a tying run.
In Game 2, Loras built one-run leads in the first and seventh innings. Niko Andriotis singled home Mark Jablonski in the bottom of the first inning to make it 1-0 Loras. Buena Vista bunted home a run in their half of the sixth inning to tie the game.
Loras responded with an Alex Rodriguez RBI double to left field plating Mike Pudlo to reclaim the lead 2-1 in the seventh.
Seeking a run in the ninth inning, the Beavers loaded the bases with two outs. They were able to get two runs on one unconventional swoop by drawing a throw to first base from catcher Danny Fahlgren attempting to try and end the game by picking off Alex Davis. Buena Vista's runner at third took off for home and was credited with a steal to tie the game. Pat Walsh's return throw to Fahlgren was off the mark and a go-ahead run came around from second base to make it 3-2. One more single in the inning made it 4-2. Loras' efforts to extend the game were halted by Beavers closer Lucas Hadaway.
Game 3 was Loras' win to start Monday's events. Loras scored three times against Scott Harris in the first inning. The top of the order provided three of Loras' five hits in the game and answered the single run Buena Vista scored in the top of the first to take a 3-1 lead. Will Petrosky settled in to work three innings and earn the win, striking out four and allowing three hits. Donny Baran, Connor Schreck, and Jeremy Gerardy came out of the bullpen to keep the Beavers off the scoreboard the rest of the way. Gerardy's save was his sixth of the season, tying the single season Loras record set by Spencer Radabaugh a year ago.
In Game 4, the teams traded punches on their way to a 4-4 tie after nine innings. The Beavers opened a 4-0 lead on the Duhawks over the first 4.5 innings. Pat Walsh was responsible for all four runs (on five hits) on the mound for Loras and he was lifted for Jake Norton in the fifth.
The Duhawks began their comeback in the bottom of the inning when they scored twice – both with two outs. Buena Vista starter Adam Bernstorf hit two Loras batters and walked two more to help Loras' cause. Loras added single runs in the seventh and eighth to tie the game. Mark Jablonski hit a sacrifice fly to score Justin Montalvo and Adrian Nunez drove home Rodriguez with a single to tie the game.
A quick ninth inning for both teams was highlighted by Travis Misner's first appearance in a Duhawk uniform with two outs in the top half of the inning. Misner battled back from a pair of injuries to crack the score sheet on Monday evening.
In the top of the tenth, Buena Vista provided the drama with a pair of two-out hits. Two singles and a walk following a strikeout to start the inning loaded the bases. Loras got the second out with a come-backer to reliever Matt Kass as he threw home. Buena Vista then produced a two run single and a two run double to jump in front. The Duhawks came up empty in the bottom of the inning in an attempt to extend the game and potentially split the series.
Loras' 11-15 IIAC record (18-19 overall) was enough for the sixth spot in the six-team IIAC tournament. The Duhawks are back in Cedar Rapids for the first time since 2009 and will play at 1:00 PM at Veteran's Memorial Stadium (home of the Cedar Rapids Kernels). Their opponent will once again be the Beavers, who locked up the #3 seed with their 3-1 weekend at Petrakis Park. Full coverage of the 2013 IIAC Tournament – with the league's automatic bid to the NCAA tournament – is available HERE.
Between games on Sunday, Loras recognized the careers of six seniors on this year's roster - Mike Canevello, Ben Cottrell, Jordan Ries, Donny Baran, and Travis Misner.