On Friday, April 13, the Wittenberg Tigers Baseball team played a double-header against the Oberlin College Yeomen. The first game ended well for Witt with a 9-4 win, but the second game ended with a loss for the Tigers, 4-7.
When asked about how he felt in regard to splitting the double-header, coach Brian McGee said, “I mean, you always want both wins, but the guys did really well to stay within conference standings.”
The first game started off with Tanner Griggs, ’21, on the mound where he faced 15 batters over four innings and threw 46 pitches, 23 of which were strikes. The second game began with Jace Barga, ’19, who faced 23 batters, pitched 53 pitches and threw 29 strikes.
“I thought Griggs and Barga, both gave quality starts,” McGee said.
The first two innings went quickly for Oberlin, with four-up, three-down in the top of the first and three-up, three-down in the top of the second. The Tigers scored for the first time in the bottom of the second when Jack Hollinshead, ’21, hit a single to center-field, which knocked in Gabe Stacy, ’21. It took until the fourth inning for the Yeomen to score, but that did not hinder the Tigers.
In the bottom of the fifth, Jack Siefert, ’21, smacked a ball to third base and made it to second before getting thrown out. But, Siefert knocked Tim Bates, ’18, designated hitter for both games, home to score and put the Tigers up 2-1.
The sixth inning was the Tigers’ inning to shine, scoring four runs: Patrick Kenny, ’20, hit a double to centerfield which sent Jordan Jolly, ’20, who was on base, home. Following that up, Bates hit a single to right field sending Kenny home. While Siefert was in the batter’s box, Bates stole his way to second and then Siefert hit a homerun, sending Bates and himself across home plate.
McGee said that he saw “great offense from senior, Tim Bates, and freshman, Jack Siefert, [who] had an outstanding day.”
The seventh inning of the first game brought in three more runs for the Tigers. Jolly hit a single to centerfield, which moved Hollinshead to third base and sent David Hamrick, ’21, home. Then, Oberlin’s pitcher – Alexander Amorello, ’19 – walked Matt Baker, ’19, pushing the Yeomen coach to switch pitchers. With a fresh arm on the mound, Ryan Probst, ’20, smacked the ball and sent it flying to left field. Probst’s hit landed him two RBI’s with Jolly and Hollinshead scoring, and advanced Baker to second base.
In the eighth inning, the Yeomen tried to come back, scoring three runs. The Tigers did not allow that to change the atmosphere of the game, so in the top of the ninth they stopped the Yeomen from scoring again. That was the conclusion of the first game, which took three hours in total.
“The guys are doing well and moving in the right direction,” McGee said.
According to McGee, the team is “proving at conference play” that they “can play at this level.”
Game two of the night began at 8:45 p.m. and was played under the lights at Carleton-Davidson Stadium. The first two innings moved quickly for the Yeomen, just as they did in the previous game. The bottom of the second was prosperous for the Tigers as Gage Carpenter, ’21, hit a beautiful single to centerfield that sent Siefert and Bates home which put the Tigers ahead 2-0. After that, Witt did not score again until the fifth inning.
The outfield received a lot of attention from Oberlin in both games, which kept Baker, Carpenter, Jeremey McAleese, ’20, Jolly and Kenny busy. All five of these players had countless plays in the outfield Friday night.
In the bottom of the fifth, the Tigers scored two times – the first an RBI for Siefert after he hit a double to leftfield that paved the way for Bates to score, the second when Hayden Knox, ’21, reached first base on an error which gave Siefert the room he needed to score. Siefert’s run was the last of the night for the Tigers.
Though Witt did not score again, the Yeomen scored three times in the top of the eighth and once in the top of the ninth. Those last four runs are what put Oberlin ahead and allowed them to claim the win for the second game.
Overall, McGee is “really proud” and “ready to see how the rest of the season turns out for the team.”
Look out for the Tigers as they play a double-header against DePauw University at home on Tuesday April 17 and then away at Kenyon College on Saturday April 21.