Baseball opens Arizona trip with sweep of IIT

Photo by Jordan Vredeveld
Photo by Jordan Vredeveld

TUCSON, Ariz. – A 17-run outburst in game one, followed by a complete-game gem from junior Andrew Gibbons in game two allowed the Concordia University Wisconsin Baseball team to sweep Illinois Institute of Technology Sunday. The Falcons, who were playing their two games on an eight-game Arizona trip, won the opener 17-7 and the nightcap 8-1.

THE BASICS
- Final Scores: Concordia Wisconsin 17, IIT 7; CUW 8, IIT 1
- Location: Kino Sports Complex – Tucson, Arizona
- Records: CUW 3-2; IIT 1-5

GAME 1 (CONCORDIA WISCONSIN 17, IIT 7)
- The Falcons got it going right away with a six-run first inning. Junior Kyle Hilliard (Oak Forest, Ill.), who led the way with five RBI in game one, drove in two with a first-inning single. Junior Kyle Washburn (Pleasant Prairie, Wis.) added a two-run single in the frame.

- The Scarlet Hawks got back into the game with a four-run third inning, but the Falcons responded with a pair of runs in the bottom half to extend the lead to four. CUW would score at least once in each at-bat the rest of the way, including five in the sixth for the 17-7 win.

- Hilliard had a monster game, going 3-for-5 with a double and five driven in. Senior Matt Schubert (West Bend, Wis.) added a double, two hits, and four RBI for the Falcons.

- Senior Bryan Thomas (Lowell, Ind.) produced from the two spot in the lineup, scoring a game-high four runs. Thomas also finished with three hits. Junior Dan Ranieri (Loves Park, Ill.) Schubert, junior Nathan Thyssen (Kimberly, Wis.), Hilliard and Washburn all scored twice for CUW.

- Junior Scott Plachinksi (South Milwaukee, Wis.) picked up the win due to being the most effective relief pitcher. He entered the game in a bases-loaded jam in the sixth and struck out both batters he faced. Freshman Nick Fox (Urbandale, Iowa) also pitched well in relief, giving up no runs in 1.1 innings of work.

GAME 2 (CUW 8, IIT 1)
- Where hitting was the story in game one, Gibbons was the story of the nightcap. He gave up just three hits, one run (unearned) and struck out seven in the complete-game victory.

- The Falcons gave Gibbons plenty of run support in game two, scoring at least one run in each of the first five innings, highlighted a three-run fourth.

- Five different players collected two hits each, led by Thomas who was 2-for-3 with two RBI. Ranieri also had two hits, including a leadoff triple. Ranieri scored the game's first run after a Thomas sacrifice fly in the first following his triple. Ranieri scored three times for the top of the Falcons order.

- Hilliard and seniors Isaac Tewes (Chaska, Minn.) and Luke Wirtz (Marshfield, Wis.) each collected two hits as well. Hilliard and Wirtz collected doubles, while junior Michael Szeszol (Lake Bluff, Ill.) added a triple for the Falcons.

UP NEXT
- The Falcons will play two more tomorrow, taking on Wesleyan in a twinbill. First pitch is set for 3:30 p.m. (central), 1:30 Arizona time.