Wartburg fires no-hitter, wins first regional opener since 2005

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Wartburg (32-12) advanced on the winner's side of the bracket in the 3-0 win over Webster (29-14) Thursday. This also marked the first NCAA Tournament first-round win for the program since 2005.

Senior Max Langheinrich (Minnetonka, Minn.) and junior Austin Bohling (Letts) combined for the no-hitter. Langheinrich went 6.2 innings and struck out nine.

The game was scoreless until the bottom of the eighth. Junior Eric Willis (Waverly) hit a leadoff single to left which extended his hitting streak to 14 games. Classmate Blake Mahoney (Des Moines) hit a bunt single back to the pitcher and Willis moved to second.

Senior Jacob Thumann (DeWitt) hit a single to shallow right field and Willis scored from second to give the Knights the 1-0 lead. This marked only the sixth earned run Webster ace Josh Fleming allowed all season.

Junior Cody Hyler (Des Moines) reached on his sac bunt attempt on a error by a Gorlok fielder which Mahoney scored on to make it 2-0. Classmate David Fitzgerald (Dubuque) hit into a fielder's choice which drove in Thumann to move the lead to three.

In the top of the ninth, Webster's leadoff man drew a walk but was forced out at second, and the next two batters were retired to seal the win for the Orange and Black.

Willis, Mahoney and Thumann all finished 2-for-4.

Wartburg will face North Central (Ill.) at 7 p.m. Friday.