Baseball team goes 4-0 over weekend

Photos by Joseph Lovercheck

Rachel Vogt, Staff Writer

The Wayne State baseball team went 4-0 on the weekend, facing the University of Mary Marauders in their first Northern Sun Conference games. The games were also supposed to be the home openers for the ’Cats, but the games were moved to Millard North High School due to the poor weather and field conditions.

“To prepare, the team really worked on trying to be perfect in the infield and to make all of our routine plays,” said sophomore Bryce Bisenius. “Offensively we tried getting after fastballs and then adjusting to off-speed trying to spray the ball to the gaps and avoid popping the ball up into the air.”

Wayne State started their first of the four games out strong, scoring right away in the first inning on an RBI double from senior Tanner Simons that scored freshman Andrew Hanson.

The ’Cats then went up to 2-0 in the fourth on a solo home run from junior Travis Miller. Hanson produced a two-run homer in the fifth to score junior Jake Lorenzini, followed by a two-run single from junior Kyle Thompson that brought home senior David Janes and pinch runner sophomore Peyton Barnes.

WSC then added two insurance runs in the bottom of the sixth to close out the scoring and end the game with an 8-0 Wildcat victory. The two teams then turned around to have another contest.

The Wildcats built an early 5-0 lead, then held off the Marauders to post the 6-5 victory.

“We were really struggling on making an adjustment to their pitchers in the middle of the innings, but eventually we put it all together to score the runs we needed to win and held them off in each half inning,” said Bisenius. “But we started to overcome the obstacles by ultimately making the adjustments to their pitching and getting after fastballs. We quit hitting the ball in the air and did our jobs both offensively and defensively.”

When Wayne State turned around to face the Marauders again on Sunday, the Wildcats made a team effort to pull off the victory, recording seven hits by seven different players.

Mary grabbed the lead early with a three run first inning. WSC scored single runs in the first and second to get within 3-2. Lorenzini led off the Wildcat offensive efforts first with a solo homer over the left field fence followed by an RBI single from senior Rob Ramsey to bring home Miller.

The Marauders came back with another run in the fourth to take a 4-2 lead, but WSC began their comeback in the fifth with one run as Miller drew a bases loaded walk to bring home Barnes, trimming the Marauder advantage to 4-3.

The Wildcats’ run in the sixth reached base when Hanson reached on a third strike wild pitch. Pinch runner Colin Chick later scored on a balk with two outs and two strikes to tie the score at 4-4.

In the seventh inning, Miller reached home on a fielding error by Mary. Later in the inning with two outs and runners on second and third, Ramsey hit a ground ball to short stop, where the ball was under thrown to first allowing Miller to score with the game-winning run.

In the fourth and final contest against the Marauders, WSC scored five runs in the first inning as the Wildcats built an early 10-2 lead, cruising to a 12-5 victory to complete the sweep.

“I think this weekend’s games will really help us prepare to go up against Duluth next weekend,” said Bisenius. “Duluth has been told to have a couple crafty lefty’s and so did Mary. We’ll continue to keep making the adjustments that we made for Mary’s lefties and carry that over into this week.”

The Wildcats will be facing Minnesota Duluth this upcoming weekend in 12 p.m. and 2 p.m. contests on both Saturday and Sunday in Wayne.