UW-Oshkosh defeated a nationally ranked baseball opponent for the second time in three days when it outscored Washington & Jefferson College (Pa.), 11-1, on Monday (March 19) in Auburndale, Fla.
Washington & Jefferson College, which posted a 42-13 record and finished second at the NCAA Division III World Series in 2017, entered Monday's contest ranked third in the country by D3baseball.com with a 7-4 record.
Monday's triumph over the Presidents increased UW-Oshkosh's winning streak to six games, the Titans' longest victory skein since outscoring six consecutive opponents midway through the 2015 season. UW-Oshkosh's recent string of wins includes a 4-2 victory over 22nd-ranked The College of St. Scholastica (Minn.) on March 17 and a pair of decisions (4-3 & 6-3) over perennial NCAA postseason participant University of St. Thomas (Minn.) on March 10.
UW-Oshkosh (7-2), which defeated Washington & Jefferson College by a 4-1 result a year ago in Auburndale, took the early advantage in Monday's meeting by scoring three times in the top of the first inning.
The Titans tallied just one hit in the opening frame, a run-scoring triple by Alex Koch that made the score 2-0. Jack Paulson started the contest with a walk and scored all the way from first base on a throwing error by Washington & Jefferson College third baseman Mullen Socha in the next at-bat. Dylan Ott produced UW-Oshkosh's third run with a perfectly executed sacrifice bunt that scored Koch.
UW-Oshkosh then broke the game with four runs on four hits in the third inning. Sam Schwenn led off the inning with a double and later scored on a single by Ott. Following a Koch hit by pitch and a single by Jensen Hinton, Logan Reckert singled to right field to score both Koch and Hinton. Jonathan Selchow closed the Titans' scoring by driving in Hinton with a sacrifice fly.
UW-Oshkosh extended its lead to 8-0 on Reckert's infield single in the fifth inning. Reckert scored Ott who doubled down the left-field line during the Titans' second at-bat.
Titan pitcher Lucas Gregory held Washington & Jefferson College scoreless until Dan Trettel singled with two outs in the bottom of the fifth inning. Trettel drove in Socha who tripled one batter earlier.
The Titans closed their scoring with three two-out runs in the seventh inning. Following a pair of strikeouts to open the frame, UW-Oshkosh scored two runs on a single Noah Polcyn and another on a single by Paulson.
Gregory (2-1) earned the pitching win for UW-Oshkosh after scattering four hits in six innings of activity. Gregory struck out seven and walked five during his 121 pitches thrown.
Ryan Wilkening, Alex Larson and Matt Wiechmann closed out the game for the Titans by pitching one scoreless inning each. The three UW-Oshkosh hurlers allowed just two hits and faced the minimum of nine batters thanks to double plays that ended the Presidents' seventh and ninth innings.
UW-Oshkosh totaled 14 hits, including three by Reckert and two apiece by Koch, Ott, Polcyn and Schwenn. Hinton, Koch, Ott and Schwenn all scored twice.
Six players had one hit apiece for Washington & Jefferson College (7-5). The lone extra-base hit for the Presidents was Socha's triple.
Ben Marsico took the pitching loss for Washington & Jefferson College. Marsico pitched five innings and yielded nine hits with eight runs allowed (seven earned). After James Trainor allowed four hits and three runs over the sixth and seventh innings, Michael Zito and Jansen Eichenlaub combined to allow just one hit during one scoreless inning apiece.
UW-Oshkosh is off Tuesday (March 20) and returns to action on Wednesday (March 21) in Auburndale against Grinnell College (Iowa).
Photo by Jennifer Zuberbier