Baseball splits doubleheader with NACC-leading Concordia Chicago

Photo by Sam Dunn
Photo by Sam Dunn

MEQUON, Wis. – Game one of Saturday's NACC doubleheader featured the Concordia University Wisconsin offense showing just how dangerous it can be as the Falcons rolled to a 16-3 win over four-time defending league champion Concordia Chicago. In game two, the Cougars showed why they are the four-time league champs, responding with a 10-4 win.

THE BASICS
- Final Scores: CUW 16, CUC 3 (Game One – F/7); CUC 10, CUW 4 (Game Two)
- Location: Kapco Park – Mequon, Wisconsin
- Records: CUW 13-8, 5-3 NACC; CUC 17-10, 9-1 NACC

GAME ONE (CUW 16, CUC 3)
- The Falcons handed the Cougars their first NACC loss via a 10-run rule since the 2012 season in the opener by totaling 16 runs and 19 hits, while making just 18 outs (CUW batted six times). CUW got rolling in the second inning by scoring eight runs and added big innings with three runs each in the fifth and sixth innings.

- CUW started the scoring with three home runs in four at-bats, building a 4-0 lead. Kyle Hilliard (Oak Forest, Ill.) and Nathan Thyssen (Appleton, Wis.) hit back-to-back home runs and two batters later Justin Barney (Kenosha, Wis.) launched a two-run home run. Matt Luft (Oshkosh, Wis.) added a RBI double, while Thyssen concluded the big inning with a two-RBI double, driving in three himself in the second.

- Four different CUW players collected three hits in the opener as Dan Ranieri (Loves Park, Ill.) joined Luft, Hilliard, and Thyssen with three hits. The Falcons middle of the order did their jobs of driving in runs as Matt Schubert (West Bend, Wis.), Bryan Thomas (Lowell, Ind.), Hilliard and Thyssen combined for 11 RBIs. Thyssen led the way with four drive in, Hilliard drove in three and Thomas and Schubert each brought in two.

- Each of the Falcons top four hitters scored two or more runs, led by Luft and Schubert who each touched home safely three times. Luft collected two doubles from the number two spot in the order.

- Andrew Gibbons (Markesan, Wis.) did his part in the opener, pitching well against a very strong Concordia Chicago lineup. Gibbons went six strong, allowing three runs and six hits. He struck out two in his third win of 2017. Brett Kolacki (Midlothian, Ill.) finished off the win by not allowing a hit in a scoreless seventh.

GAME TWO (CUC 10, CUW 4)
- The Cougars responded in game two by tallying 18 hits in a 10-4 victory. The Falcons offense collected 11 hits of their own, but CUC got the big hits when it needed them to secure the split.

- In game two, Concordia Chicago used the long ball to its advantage, answering the Falcons three home runs in the opener with three round-trippers of their own. Justin Rodriguez, Kevin Garcia, and Kevin Garvey all hit home runs for the Cougars.

- Ranieri, Luft, Thomas, and Isaac Tewes (Chaska, Minn.) all collected two hits to pace the Falcons. Thomas and Tewes each doubled as well.

- Nick Hirst (Davenport, Iowa) started the game for the Falcons on the mound and was one of six pitchers used. He was charged with the loss, allowing three earned. Seth Cox (Gilbert, Ariz.) was the only Falcons pitcher to not allow a run, throwing scoreless frames in the eighth and ninth innings.

- Brian Musielak picked up the win for CUC by throwing five innings, surrendering four earned. Mike Formella threw the final four frames for his third save of the season.

UP NEXT
- The Falcons will visit Rockford for a NACC doubleheader Monday. First pitch is set for 3 p.m.