Baseball uses five-run ninth in second game to split against Dominican
MEQUON, Wis. – For 17 innings the Concordia University Wisconsin Baseball team was kept in check by the Dominican University pitching staff. The Falcons had scored just two runs heading into the bottom of the ninth in game two of a doubleheader and were on the verge of being swept by the Stars, trailing 5-1 after falling 4-1 in the opener.
That's when the offense came to life as senior Beau Burgert (Oshkosh, Wis.) belted a game-tying grand slam and senior Taylor Buuck (Hillsboro, Ore.) won the game with a sacrifice fly, scoring freshman Bryan Thomas (Lowell, Ind.) and completing the improbable comeback.
After eight solid innings from Cody Mueller, DU went to the bullpen in the ninth and that is when momentum shifted in favor of the Falcons. A single by junior Brandon Seifert (Germantown, Wis.) occurred between two walks which loaded the bases for Burgert. DU went to a second reliever in the ninth to face Burgert but he welcomed him by sending the first pitch over the left field wall, knotting the score at five.
Following a strikeout, CUW again loaded the bases beginning with a single from Thomas, followed by a walk and single from freshman Tyler Crass (Glendale, Wis.). Buuck then worked the count full before sending a fly ball to right field, just deep enough to score Thomas and give the Falcons a split.
The game two win marked the second straight season CUW used a walkoff to defeat Dominican. On April 27 of last season Burgert recorded a game-winning single in the bottom of the ninth to help the Falcons complete a sweep of the Stars.
Burgert finished game two with five RBIs and was one of three Falcons to tally two hits. Seifert and Thomas also recorded a pair of hits, while junior Joel Sharon (Glendale, Wis.) roped a double and scored twice.
Before the ninth inning of game two, the story of the game was the visiting Stars pitching. Mitch McCaffery threw a complete game in the opener, striking out seven and allowing just one earned. Mueller threw eight innings in game two and didn't allow an earned run, while striking out three.
The Falcons also got quality pitching on Sunday. Junior Tyler Adams (Jackson, Wis.) went the distance in a game two win, allowing four earned runs. Adams struck out two and did not issue a walk. He really hit his stride midway through the game, retiring 15 straight from the fourth through eighth innings.
In game one Sharon took the loss despite allowing just one earned in seven innings. Sharon scattered seven hits and recorded six punchouts. Freshman Dylan Gausman (Eagan, Minn.) threw two innings of relief for the Falcons.
Thomas impressed in the home opener for the Falcons as he added two hits in the opening game as well, finishing the day with four. Senior outfielder Jay Kuczynski (Cedarburg, Wis.) totaled two hits as well game one.
CUW (5-4, 1-1 NACC) will return to action tomorrow when they travel to River Forest, Ill. to take on No. 10 Concordia University Chicago in a NACC twinbill. First pitch is set for 7 p.m.