Tommies cap 4-0 week at regionals, set for Appleton

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J.D. Dorgan homered and drove in another with a sac fly and was named regonal tourney MVP.
St. Thomas athletics photo

St. Thomas won its fifth NCAA regional baseball championship in 16 seasons with a 4-0 march through this week's six-team tournament in Moline, Ill.

The No. 6-ranked Tommies rallied from a 3-0 deficit on Sunday to record a 9-3 victory over Rose-Hulman (Ind.).

St. Thomas (37-7) is 12-0 in May and 28-2 in its last 30 games. It advances to this week's eight-team College World Series in Appleton, Wis.

The Tommies placed second at nationals in 1999 and 2000; won the national crowns in 2001 and 2009; and took third in 2012, with many of the current players.

Despite playing without injured All-America candidate Tyler Peterson, St. Thomas slapped 56 hits and scored 38 runs in its 4-0 regional run.

Colin Wendinger started and pitched into the fourth inning, allowing seven hits and three runs. Freshman Caleb Fernholz took the pitching win for the second day in a row with strong middle relief as he allowed no runs in 3 2-3 innings. Senior Tommy Danczyk came on with a 5-3 lead to face the tying run and got the last five outs for his 10th save.

J.D. Dorgan had a solo homer and sac fly to drive in two runs and added a single. Tim Kuzniar had a pair of RBI hits. Brady Johnson went 3-for-3 and drove in one.

UST trailed 3-2 into the last of the seventh inning but tied the game on singles by Sam Miller and Ben Podobinski plus an infield error. Kuzniar followed with an RBI single, and Dorgan added a sacrifice fly to give the Toms a 5-3 lead. In the eighth inning, UST loaded the bases, and a two-out error led to four more runs.

Kuzniar had seven hits in the regional and now has 220 on his career. Dorgan had eight hits and now has 196. Podobinski had nine hits and now has 193 in just three seasons.