Centre sets program record

Down six runs going into the bottom of the ninth, Johnson & Wales rallied to defeat UMass Dartmouth. Francisco Diaz hit a walk-off grand slam to lift the Wildcats to a 13-12 victory.
Johnson and Wales athletics photo

Saint John's (Minn.) ran its win streak to five games with a doubleheader sweep of St. Olaf, 17-7 and 9-5, on Good Friday, in Northfield. The Johnnies (23-8, 8-4 MIAC) cracked 16 hits in game one and broke open a 6-5 lead with seven runs in the third inning. The 17 runs scored were the most by SJU in conference play since the 20-3 win over Macalester on April 22, 2015, in Collegeville. The Johnnies' season high came in the 18-3 victory over Wisconsin-Superior March 18 in Tucson, Ariz. The Oles (15-8, 6-4 MIAC) led game two for the first five innings until SJU posted a four-run sixth to complete the sweep. Junior Joey Stock batted 5-for-8 with two home runs, a double, seven RBI and five runs scored in the sweep. The bulk of the day's output came in the opener: 4-for-5 with the two homers, six RBI and four runs scored. The performance was Stock's third multi-homer game of his career..

St. Thomas swept into first place in the MIAC with a
4-0, 5-4 home sweep of Carleton. The Purple (15-7
saw their pitchers combine to record 18 strikeouts on
the day, including nine by Grant Laubscher in a four-hit
shutout in game one.

St. Thomas athletics photo

Centre defeated Berry, 14-7, making history with their 23rd victory of the season, setting the record for a program that dates back to the 1800s. The Colonels' first 20-win season came back in 1996, and the previous record of 22 wins happened in 2001. This squad's 23 wins comes with a three games left on the regular season schedule before postseason play. With Friday's victory, the Colonels improve to 23-12 overall and 9-9 in the Southern Athletic Association, dropping the host Vikings to 25-13 overall and 11-8 in-conference. Five individuals recorded multiple hits as Centre totaled 17 as a team, reaching double-digit base knocks for the 10th time this season. Sam Shelley went five innings in the start, striking out a pair of batters while surrendering six earned runs.

With the wind howling in and offense hard to come by, an outstanding pitching performance and a late rally book-ended Wheaton's doubleheader sweep of Augustana at Lee Pfund Stadium. Michael McCraith threw his second straight complete game in Wheaton's 1-0 victory in game one of the doubleheader before the Thunder rallied for a 4-3 victory in the night cap. Augustana entered the day riding a ten-game winning streak with a two-game lead in the CCIW standings before falling to 22-7-1. Wheaton improves to 20-10. The Thunder will go for the series sweep on Saturday afternoon in Moline. McCraith was the headliner in Wheaton's game one victory. After Wheaton stranded a runner at third in the bottom of the first inning, McCraith surrendered a leadoff double in the top of the second inning but emphatically set down the next three batters, beginning a streak of 15 consecutive batters set down by the Thunder ace.

The York Spartans completed a four-run comeback win in
the nick of time as they beat the rain and defeated Mary
Washington in game one of their three-game series by an
8-4 score in five innings.

York photo courtesy of David Sinclair photography

Taylor Poffenroth drove in six runs and Whitworth scored nine runs in the fifth inning to turn a four-run deficit into an 18-5 blowout over visiting Linfield in a Northwest Conference baseball game on Friday afternoon at Merkel Field. The NWC Champion Pirates (21-11 overall, 18-4 NWC) will close out the regular season against the Wildcats (6-27, 3-19) with a doubleheader on Saturday.  Twelve Whitworth seniors will be recognized prior to the first game. offenroth went 3-4 with six RBIs, while Joe Howell finished 3-5 with three RBIs.

The strategy against Hope made sense. With first base open, intentionally walk one of the Flying Dutchmen's top hitters to set up a potential inning-ending double play. Hope's best hitter made the plan backfire. Right fielder Mason Opple singled to left in the bottom of the 11th inning to drive in Evan Maday for a 4-3 walk-off win for the Flying Dutchmen in Game 2 of a doubleheader against visiting Trine at Boeve Stadium. Hope also took Game 1, 5-0, for a sweep in the opener of the four-game series. The MIAA-leading Flying Dutchmen (25-1 overall) upped their win streak to 16 games — the second-longest in team history. With a 15-1 league record, Hope leads second-place Adrian (15-3 MIAA) in the league standings after Adrian split with third-place Albion.

Buena Vista scored four times over the final three innings while holding visiting Wartburg scoreless in each of those frames, as the Beavers went on to win the opener of the three-game weekend series with a 7-4 victory over the Knights on Friday night. Logan Mueller finished with a career-high three hits after coming into the contest with only three hits overall in his career.  Joe Rock doubled and was one of three players with two hits while also scoring twice. The two teams combined for 26 total hits.  The Knights (8-21, 5-11 A-R-C) had five players finish with two hits, including Parker Ridge who also drove in two of the team's four runs.

Sul Ross (14-19, 10-10) and Texas-Dallas (18-17, 10-7) teams split a Friday ASC doubleheader in Richardson. The Lobos scored early and held the momentum for a 14-9 win in game one. Texas-Dallas scored 13 runs in the second inning and held off a Lobo rally to claim an 18-9 victory in the second contest. The two teams combined for 27 hits in the first game slug fest and upped the total in game two with 35 hits. Texas-Dallas' Thomas Craig led all hitters on the day with eight hits between the two games.

Worcester State ran its winning streak to five games on Friday afternoon with a sweep of a Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference sweep of MCLA at the Zavattaro Athletic Complex. Worcester State won game one 4-0, before coming from behind for a 5-4 win in game two. With the sweep, the Lancers complete the sweep of the teams' three-game set and improve to 16-13 overall and 8-7 in the MASCAC. In other MASCAC ation Bridgewater State and Framington State split a two game set. Bridgewater won the first game, 18-8, while Framingham earned the split with a 6-3 victory in the nightcap.

Piling up 10 runs on 15 hits and holding the Dubuque Spartans off the scoreboard, the Central College Dutch took a 10-0 win in the opening of a three-game series Friday night. Central improved to 18-10 (8-9 American Rivers Conference) while the Spartans dropped to 16-10-1 (6-8 conference). This is a big win for us, Dubuque is a solid team," coach Matt Schirm said. "We finally put it all together and it felt good." Niclk Long returned to form with a stellar outing on the mound. He threw six scoreless innings with six strikeouts despite three walks and six hits allowed. "He just battled," Schirm said. "I don't think he had his best stuff, but he came up with big pitches when he needed them and got out of a couple of jams."