|John Vodenlich earned his 500th victory at UW-Whitewater. He is now tied for third in WIAC history with UW-Oshkosh's Russ Tiedemann with 501 wins.
d3photography.com photo by Steve Fromell
The No. 8 University of Wisconsin-Whitewater baseball team posted its highest scoring output of the season in one game and earned a comeback victory in another on Saturday afternoon to sweep UW-Oshkosh in a Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference doubleheader in Oshkosh, Wis.
One day after clinching the conference regular season championship and top seed in next week's WIAC Tournament, the Warhawks (30-6 overall, 17-3 WIAC) registered a seven-inning 23-6 triumph, the team's third-highest run total in one game in program history, before capping the day with five runs in the ninth inning for an 11-8 comeback win.
With the team's first win of the day, head coach John Vodenlich earned his 500th victory at UW-Whitewater. He is now tied for third in WIAC history with UW-Oshkosh's Russ Tiedemann with 501 wins at a conference school and owns 530 for his career.
In the opener, UW-Whitewater mashed a season-high 21 hits, including six doubles and six home runs, and scored four or more runs in four innings to end the game by run rule.
Sophomore third baseman Cal Aldridge (Crystal Lake, Ill./Prairie Ridge) collected three hits, including two home runs, and added four runs scored and five runs batted in. Senior second baseman Steve Chamberlain (Rockford, IL/Guilford) homered and drove in four runs, and senior shortstop Jordan Kuczynski (Germantown/Germantown) tallied three hits, including one home run and two doubles, and knocked in four runs.
Junior centerfielder Daytona Bryden (Rockton, IL/Hononegah) finished 4-for-4 with two doubles, one home run, four runs scored and two RBI, and junior first baseman Blake Fleischman (Germantown, Wis./Germantown) recorded two hits and two RBI. Junior right fielder Brett Krause (Menomonee Falls, Wis./Menomonee Falls) contributed three hits, three runs scored and one RBI, and junior designated hitter Will Helbing (Waunakee, Wis./Waunakee) and sophomore catcher Mike Aiello (Racine, Wis./Horlick) each posted two hits and one RBI.
Senior pitcher Westin Wuethrich (Greenwood, Wis./Greenwood) moved to 5-1 on the season in the victory, striking out six over 5 1/3 innings of work. Senior Matt Langlie (Mundelein, IL/Mundelein) tossed 1 2/3 innings of shutout baseball in relief of Wuethrich.
In the second game, the Warhawks rallied back from a two-run deficit with five runs in the top of the ninth inning. Krause doubled home Fleischman to bring the team within one, and Aldridge tied the contest on a one-out single up the middle.
The next batter, sophomore right fielder Kevin White (Chicago, Ill./St. Laurence), knocked a three-run homer to left to give UW-Whitewater the lead for good.
Senior left-hander James Georgakas (Ellsworth, Wis./Ellsworth) pitched two scoreless frames of relief to pick up the win, his first of the year. Senior Mike Nompleggi (Oconto Falls/Oconto Falls) pitched around a two-on, no-out jam in the bottom of the ninth to pick up his fifth save of the season.
The Titans (22-18, 11-9) held a 4-0 lead through three innings before the Warhawks tied the contest at 4-4 in the fourth on a three-run double by Aiello and an RBI double by junior designated hitter Jeff Szubert (Tinley Park, Ill./Victor J. Andrew).
UW-Oshkosh plated two in the fifth before White led off the top of the sixth with a home run to make it 6-5. The Titans crossed the plate two more times in the bottom of the sixth to take an 8-5 lead before UW-Whitewater scored six unanswered runs over the final two innings.
The Warhawks wrap up the regular season Sunday with a doubleheader at St. Norbert starting at 11 a.m.