CHICAGO, Ill. – The Illinois Tech baseball team split the final home doubleheader against the Pioneers from Wisconsin-Platteville on Sunday afternoon, dropping game one 5-3 and emerging victorious in game two 1-0. DJ Rybski and James Tarala were honored for Senior Day at Ed Glancy Field.
Runs-Hits-Errors (Game 1)
- Wisconsin-Platteville: 5 runs, 11 hits, 2 errors
- Illinois Tech: 3 runs, 7 hits, 0 errors
How it Happened (Game 1)
- After two scoreless innings to begin the game, Tech starter John Zalewski found himself in trouble in the top of the third. After walking the leadoff man—first baseman Collin Mormann—Zalewski gave up back-to-back singles to designated hitter Ross Krist and right fielder Josh Moses to move Mormann up to third base. Center fielder Jonathan Kelso then followed with an RBI double to right center. Zalewski was able to work out of the rest of the frame, leaving the Pioneers with just a 1-0 lead.
- Tech wasted no time in retailiating. Second baseman DJ Rybski led off for Scarlet Hawks with a double in the bottom of the third and advanced to third on a passed ball. Catcher David Navarro promptly lifted a fly ball to left field for a sacrifice fly—allowing Rybski to score and tie the game at 1-1.
- Zalweski settled in and kept Wisconsin-Platteville quiet until the top of the sixth inning. Third baseman Brendon Reifsteck singled to start and advanced to second base then third base on two wild pitches. Two batters later shortstop Mitchell Susa doubled in Reifsteck to reclaim the lead for the Pioneers. UW-Platteville added an insurance run when Mormann drove in Susa with an RBI single.
- The Scarlet Hawks once again rallied in the following inning to tie the game. Center fielder Peter Upham and third baseman Nick Bledsoe began the bottom of the seventh with back-to-back hits, giving Tech runners at second and third. Rybski cut into the deficit with an RBI sacrifice bunt to score Upham. Bledsoe would come around to score a couple batters later on a hit by left fielder Nick Worden, tying the game at three runs apiece.
- Relief pitcher Roberto Carselle came in for Zalewski and pitched well for the seventh and eight innings. However, in the top of the ninth, Carselle hit Mormann with a pitch to start the inning. With Paul Maguire coming in to pinch run for him, the Pioneer's Krist and Moses followed with subsequent hits, driving in the go-ahead run 4-3. Catcher Connor Crotty provided an insurance run for Wisconsin-Platteville with a sacrifice fly, making the score 5-3. Tech could not rally against reliever Darren Strasburg in the bottom of the ninth and dropped game one.
Runs-Hits-Errors (Game 2)
- Wisconsin-Platteville: 0 runs, 4 hits, 2 errors
- Tech: 1 run, 5 hits, 1 error
How it Happened (Game 2)
- Both starting pitchers dominated throughout game two. Tech starting pitcher Ian Duke struggled with his command early, throwing many pitches within the first five innings. But Duke was able to settle in and get quick innings in the sixth and seventh to give the well-used Tech bullpen a break.
- Wisconsin-Platteville starter Caleb Kaufmann pitched the whole game for the Pioneers (eight innings.) He only yielded five hits and one walk with five strikeouts.
- Tech scored the game's lone run off Kaufmann in the bottom of the fifth. The Scarlet Hawks' right fielder Zachary Dickey doubled to right center and advanced to third on a wild pitch to lead off for Tech. The Hawks used small ball to bring Dickey in, as shortstop Orlando Cardenas-Juan lifted a ball to center field for a sacrifice fly.
- Relief pitcher Jacob Geiger came in for Duke for the eighth and ninth innings and shut the Pioneers down. Geiger did not allow a hit or a walk and struck out two batters in six outs to earn the two-inning save for the Scarlet Hawks, closing out the 1-0 victory.
Scarlet Hawks Standouts
- Rybski went 3-for-5 with an RBI and a run scored
- Dickey finished with two hits in five at-bats, walked twice and scored a run
- Duke threw seven innings of shutout ball, allowing four hits and two walks while striking out eight
Stats to Know
- Wisconsin-Platteville left 17 men on base while Tech only stranded eight
- Tech combined for 22 total strikeouts; the Pioneers combined for 14
- Tech will conclude the regular season next weekend against Wisconsin-Oshkosh in two doubleheaders on Friday and Saturday. The games will be played in Carol Stream, Illinois at Lee Pfund Stadium with Friday beginning at 12:00 p.m. and Saturday beginning at 1:00 p.m.