APPLETON, Wis. - Sophomore Ryan Duphorn (Erial, N.J./Paul VI) went 3 for 4 with one run and three RBI as the top-seeded Randolph-Macon baseball team fell 8-6 to No. 5 Texas-Tyler Monday afternoon at the NCAA Division III World Series at Fox Cities Stadium.
The Yellow Jackets, under head coach Ray Hedrick, finished with a 38-9-1 mark, setting a program record for victories in a season. The R-MC senior Class of 2018 registered 125 wins over their four-year career, also a program record.
The Patriots (38-18) advance to the championship series against the winner of today's Concordia Chicago-Texas Lutheran game.
The R-MC offense broke through in the bottom of the third. Duphorn had a one-out double to right, his second two-bagger of the game. After he moved to third on a groundout by junior Jeff Butler (Chesapeake, Va./Western Branch), Duphorn scored on a double by senior Cole Migliorini (Stafford, Va./Colonial Forge) to give the Yellow Jackets an early 1-0 advantage.
After UTT tied it in the top of the fourth, R-MC used some two-out magic to reclaim the lead in the bottom of the frame. Junior Cole Grinde (Woodford, Va./Caroline) fouled off several pitches before drawing a two-out walk. Sophomore Michael Nickles (Stafford, Va./Colonial Forge) dropped a single into left and sophomore Zach Evans (Fort Mill, S.C./Seneca) was nicked by a pitch to load the bases. Duphorn singled to right center to drive in Grinde and Nickles, giving the Yellow Jackets a 3-1 edge.
The Patriots put together their own two-out rally in the top of the fifth, plating six to take a 7-3 lead. UTT added one in the top of the sixth to go up 8-3.
In the bottom of the sixth, Grinde was hit by a pitch, while Nickles and Evans followed with base hits to load the bases. Butler delivered a sacrifice fly to center, but R-MC stranded two in scoring position to trail 8-4
The Yellow Jackets cut the deficit in half in the bottom of the eighth. Nickles was hit by a pitch and Evans walked to start the inning. Both runners moved up on a wild pitch. Butler's sacrifice fly brought home Nickles, and a single by Migliorini drove in Evans as R-MC pulled within two at 8-6 heading to the ninth.
In the top of the ninth, the leadoff hitter sent a foul ball down the right field line. Butler streaked over and made a diving catch, colliding with the rolled-up tarp. He did remain in the game.
The Yellow Jackets went down in order in the bottom of the ninth to end the contest.
Duphorn had a stolen base to raise his season total to 25, the top mark in the ODAC and a program record.
Migliorini had two hits and two RBI, while Nickles went 2 for 3 with two runs. Migliorini had eight RBI in five World Series games and finished with 148 career RBI, a school record.
Senior Cullen Moore (Stafford, Va./North Stafford) gave the Yellow Jackets a solid start. He retired the first 10 hitters in order. He allowed one hit and one walk through the first 4.2 innings. Senior Christian Cok (Chester, S.C./Lewisville) pitched two innings with one run and three strikeouts. He finished with 75 career appearances, the top mark in program history. Senior Cody Thompson (Mechanicsville, Va./Atlee) tossed two scoreless innings to finish the game.