Warrior Baseball Drops A Double-Header To UMary

From:  WSU Sports Information    Photo:  Chops Hancock

BISMARK, N.D. – Winona State University dropped a pair of close ballgames Tuesday afternoon at the University of Mary as the Warriors’ NSIC record dipped below .500 for the first time since the opening week of conference play.

The Warriors (15-14, 8-9 NSIC) fell in the opening affair, 3-1, before dropping the doubleheader finale to the Marauders (11-18, 7-10 NSIC), 3-2.

The two team’s pitching staffs ruled the day as WSU and UMary offenses combined for just 18 hits over the 16 innings of play. One of the Warriors’ three hits in game one came in the top of the first frame that saw Winona State stake starter Aaron Mutter to a 1-0 lead.

Mutter (2-2) ended up on the wrong end of a pitcher’s duel as the junior scattered six hits over 6.0 IP and allowed three runs in the loss.

Zac Stange reached on an error to open the day in game one and later scored the first run on the second UMary error in the top of the first frame. Tanner Williams singled and Austin Savary walked in the inning as the Winona State offense looked ready for a big day before the Marauder pitching staff locked in.

The home team quickly answered back in the bottom half of the first inning, getting the lead-off man on to start the frame and pushing him around to score just two batters later to knot the score at 1-1.

The Warrior bats fell silent the rest of the way as WSU was sent down in order five times before collecting its final two hits in the seventh frame.

Mutter tried to work himself out of a jam in the third inning, but UMary tagged the right-hander for a pair of runs that proved to be the difference in the tilt. 

In game two, Nicolas Herold (0-1) saw his scoreless streak of 14.2 IP come to an end at the most inopportune time, as the sophomore reliver allowed the game-ending run for UMary to cross in the bottom of the ninth inning. Herold entered in the bottom of the seventh in relief of Dillon Whittaker and sat down the first seven batters he faced. In what turned out to be his longest appearances of the year, Herold walked two straight batters with one out and hit two consecutive Marauders to force in the game-winning run.

Whittaker allowed just two runs (one earned) on four hits over 6.0 IP in his start which resulted in a no-decision. UMary jumped on the sophomore hurler for its first run in the bottom of the first inning before Whittaker blanked the Marauders over the next three frames.

The Warriors took advantage of another Marauder miscue in the third inning when Andrew Pliner reached on a hit-by-pitch to start the inning and later scored on a passed ball to tie the game at 1-1.

The fifth inning saw each team plate one run apiece that were both coincidentally unearned due to errors in the field. Winona State took a 2-1 lead on an RBI-triple by Derek Martin before UMary plated the tying run in the bottom of the frame.

The sure-handed Warriors committed three errors in the second game Tuesday, adding to their total of 12 over the last six outings.

Winona State will now enjoy an extended week off before attempting to return to the win column on Tuesday, April 16 at home in a doubleheader against Wayne State College. First pitch is slated for 1:30 p.m. at Loughrey Field.

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