JOLIET, Ill. – The Olivet Nazarene University baseball team continues its run in the Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference (CCAC) Tournament facing the Fighting Saints of University of St. Francis in an elimination game and the Cougars of Saint Xavier University in the Championship Game One at DuPage Medical Group Field on Tuesday night.
Elimination Game: ONU 7, USF 1
After coming off a 2-1 loss last night, the Tigers came out firing on all cylinders tacking on the first runs of the game in the fourth inning. With one out, Ryan Russman (SO/Wheaton, Ill.) and Terry Daniels (SR/Auburn, N.Y.) reached on a single and a hit-by-pitch, respectively. After Jacob Bulthuis (SR/Tinley Park, Ill.) loaded the bases on a bunt single, Tyler Wheeler (JR/Graham, Wash.) sent two runs home on a two-run single. After Alex Ortiz (FR/Ponte Vendra Beach, Fla.) walked to load the bases again, Nathan Moonen (SR/Fort Wayne, Ind.) drove home Bulthuis on a groundout to second. Nolan Louis (SO/Alachua, Fla.) then singled through the right side and drove home a pair of runs. The Tigers led 5-0.
The Tigers notched a few more runs in the fifth inning. Russman, Daniels, and Bulthuis all reached base on a pair of singles and a hit-by-pitch. Russman then scored on a fielder’s choice and Daniels ran across home plate on a wild pitch making the score 7-0. The Fighting Saints picked up their lone run on an RBI single in the ninth and made the score 7-1.
Starting pitcher Ethan Underwood (SO/Woodstock, Ga.) pitches a gem going eight innings, allowing four hits and struck out seven as the Tigers won 7-1 and advance to play Saint Xavier in the proceeding game.
Championship Game One: ONU 3, SXU 2
The Tigers did not waste much time in marking the game’s first run. Timo Schau (SR/Chicago, Ill.) laid down a bunt single to lead off the inning. After Russman grounded out to the third basemen, Daniels drove home Schau on an RBI single making the score 1-0.
The Tiger starter Griffin Sahli (FR/Lexington, Ky.) pitched well as he went four innings, surrendering two hits on no runs and struck out three Cougar batters against two walks. Sahli and the Tigers were still up 1-0 through four innings of play. The Cougars got on the board in the sixth inning on a two-run single and took the lead 2-1.
The Tigers started a rally in the ninth inning. Wheeler led off with a base hit and Ortiz moved him over with a sacrifice bunt. After Moonen walked and Louis reached on a fielder’s choice, Kai Hudson (SO/St. Petersburg, Fla.) stepped to the plate. Down to his final strike, Hudson delivered a base hit into right field and platted pinch runner Owen Oliver (SR/Spring Arbor, Mich.) to tie the game at two. The next batter was Schau. Also, on a 2-2 count, Schau hit a ball to the pitcher and meanwhile Louis was charging for the plate and dove in safe under the tag. The Tigers rallied to win the game, 3-2, and force a second Championship game on Wednesday night.
Finals: Elimination Game One: ONU 7, USF 1 | Championship Game One: ONU 3, SXU 2
Records: University of St. Francis: 24-20 | Saint Xavier: 32-24 | Olivet Nazarene: 35-18
Location: DuPage Medical Field | University of St. Francis | Joliet, Ill.
Quick Hits (Both Games)
- Game One
- Game Two
- Schau was the lone Tiger with two hits with the second one the game-winner.
- Schau and Daniels drove in the two runs.
- Parker Hale (SR/Fort Wayne, Ind.) earned his third win of the season throwing five innings and surrendered two runs on six hits and struck out two and walked one.
The Tigers play the Cougars of Saint Xavier University for the CCAC Championship on Wednesday, May 12 at 7 p.m. at DuPage Medical Group Field.