|UW-La Crosse was safely in the field, but will the home field be enough to help the Eagles move on?
Photo by Larry Radloff, d3photography.com
Follow this regional
Ripon 15, at UW-Whitewater 7Box Score
May 14: All times Eastern
UW-Whitewater 2, at St. John's 0Box Score
at Coe 5, Ripon 4Box Score
May 15: All times Eastern
Final - 13 innings
UW-La Crosse 8, at Washington U. 6Video | Box Score | Recap | Recap | Live stats | Photos
By Erik Buchinger
Top-seeded UW-Whitewater headlines a competitive Midwest regional, but several quality teams have the opportunity to emerge and make their way to the 2015 World Series.
Whitewater and No. 2 seed UW-La Crosse earned at-large bids, as did third-seeded Washington U., which made the field as one of the two Pool B selections. The rest of the teams in the region needed a conference title to earn their way in.
No. 4 seed St. John’s beat two-time defending MIAC champion St. Thomas twice on Sunday to advance to the regionals. Fifth-seeded Coe used a six-run sixth inning against Wartburg to win the IIAC.
Sixth-seeded Concordia-Chicago scored the winning run in the top of the ninth with a hit-by-pitch to win the Northern Athletics Collegiate Conference tournament and earn its fourth consecutive NCAA appearance. No. 7 seed St. Scholastica won its eighth consecutive UMAC title, and eighth-seeded Ripon played four games in two days in the Midwest Conference to earn its spot.
La Crosse Regional schedule
All times Central
Wednesday, May 13
Game 1 - No. 4 St. John's (26-14) vs. No. 5 Coe (31-12), 10 a.m.
Game 2 - No. 1 UW-Whitewater (33-9) vs. No. 8 Ripon (23-14), 1:15 p.m.
Game 3 - No. 3 Washington U. (33-14) vs. No. 6 Concordia-Chicago (30-13), 4:30 p.m.
Game 4 - No. 2 UW-La Crosse (28-12) vs. No. 7 St. Scholastica (32-11), 7:45 p.m.
Thursday, May 14
Game 5 - St. John's vs. UW-Whitewater - 10 a.m.
Game 6 - Concordia-Chicago vs. St. Scholastica - 1:15 p.m.
Game 7 - Coe vs. Ripon - 4:30 p.m.
Meet the teams
Friday, May 15
Game 8 - Washington U. vs. UW-La Crosse - 10 am.
Game 9 - Concordia-Chicago vs. Ripon, 1:15 pm.
Game 10 - Washington U. vs. UW-Whitewater, 4:30 pm.
Game 11 - Coe vs. UW-La Crosse, 7:45 pm.
Saturday, May 16
Game 12 - Concordia-Chicago vs. UW-Whitewater, 10 am.
Game 13 - UW-La Crosse vs Concordia-Chicago, 1:30 pm
Sunday, May 17
Game 14 - Coe vs. UW-La Crosse, Noon.
Game 15 - Coe vs. UW-La Crosse, 3:30 pm (if necessary)
The favorite has to be the defending champions from UW-Whitewater. The Warhawks came into the season ranked No. 1 to begin the season and remained in the top three throughout. The target will be once again will be on the back of the Warhawks, who look to advance to Appleton for another shot at a national title and become the fourth team to win back-to-back.
Most likely to disappoint
St. Scholastica came one win away from going undefeated in the UMAC, but the Saints have struggled against quality opponents. St. Scholastica finished with a 2-8 record against teams in the playoff field, including 1-4 against teams in the Midwest regional.
UW-La Crosse earned its third trip to the playoffs in the past four years, but the Eagles have never advanced past the regionals. La Crosse beat Whitewater twice this season and took three games against UW-Stevens Point, the No. 1 seed in the Central. It also doesn’t hurt that La Crosse will have the home field advantage as the host of the regional.
Players to Watch
C Ben Morgan, UW-La Crosse (.324, 28 R, 47 H, 11 2B, 5 HR, 32 RBI)
1B Zack Kessinger, Washington U. (.387, 44 R, 67 H, 16 2B, 48 RBI)
2B CJ Price, Washington U. (.364, 52 R, 64 H, 14 2B, 41 RBI, 15 SB)
SS Mikole Pierce, UW-Whitewater (.390, 43 R, 60 H, 15 2B, 9 HR, 45 RBI, 16 SB)
3B Derek Schiebel, St. John’s (.374, 39 R, 61 H, 16 2B, 24 RBI)
OF Chris Lowery, Washington U. (.424, 55 R, 81 H, 5 HR, 66 RBI, 25 SB)
OF Trevor Bernsdorf, St. Scholastica (.408, 41 R, 62 H, 14 2B, 49 RBI)
OF Aaron Pfaff, St. John’s (.386, 40 R, 64 H, 35 RBI, 13 SB)
OF Carlos Olavarria, Concordia-Chicago (.380, 48 R, 65 H, 11 2B, 48 RBI, 24 SB)
SP Daniel Wood, St. Scholastica (9-0, 1.12, 4 CG, 28 K, 6 BB)
SP Collin Grove, UW-Whitewater (8-2, 2.26, 4 CG, 49 K, 10 BB)
SP/RP Jack Hoffmann, Coe (8-1, 1.35, 1 CG, 2 SV, 36 K, 8 BB)
RP Jameson Sadowske, UW-La Crosse (2-0, 0.63, 9 SV, 26 K, 8 BB)
UTL Nick Kita, Ripon (.359, 23 R, 46 H, 7 2B, 23 RBI)