March 29, 2014

Baseball Drops 11-Inning Game Against Grinnell 10-8

St. Louis, Mo., March 29, 2014 – The Washington University in St. Louis baseball team erased a seven-run deficit in the second inning, but came up short in a 10-8 loss in 11 innings against Grinnell College Saturday afternoon at Kelly Field.

Grinnell jumped out to a 7-0 lead in its first at-bat, scoring all seven runs with two outs. In the bottom of the inning, sophomore Max Golembo, sophomore Kyle Kozak and junior Zack Kessinger led off with three straight hits to load the bases. After a pair of strikeouts, freshman CJ Price stroked a single up the middle to score two runs. Junior Brandon Deger followed with an RBI single to make the score 7-3 before a flyout ended the inning.

In the bottom of the second, junior Andrew Goldstick reached on a leadoff error by the first baseman on a bunt attempt down the first-base line. Kozak drew a one-out walk, and junior Chris Lowery got a two-out RBI single to bring the Bears to within 7-4. After senior Andrew Dwoskin reached on a walk to load the bases, Price drilled a three-RBI triple to the gap in right-center field to tie the game at 7-7. Deger followed with a single to scored Price and gave the Bears the 8-7 lead.

After giving up seven runs on five hits and two walks in the first inning, graduate student Stephen Bonser retired nine of the next 10 batters he faced before Grinnell turned a leadoff walk into the game-tying run in the top of the fifth. Bonser was replaced by freshman Nick Gollin in the sixth inning. Gollin threw a season-high five innings of relief, keeping Grinnell scoreless through the 10th inning.

In the bottom of the sixth, the Bears got the bases loaded with no outs on a pair of singles and an error, but were unable to plate any runs as two runners were thrown out at home on back-to-back fielder's choice plays ahead of an inning-ending strikeout as the score remained 8-8. The Bears had another prime scoring opportunity in the bottom of the 10th when Goldstick led off with a bunt single and Golembo followed with his second walk of the game. Kessinger was hit by a pitch to load the bases with one out, but a fielder's choice to the pitcher that got Goldstick out at home, followed by a strikeout, ended the Bears' scoring threat.

The Pioneers finally got to Gollin in the top of the 11th with back-to-back singles to start the inning. Junior Max Zhang came into the game and got a called strikeout and a flyout, before giving up back-to-back singles and an error that put Grinnell ahead 10-8. Zhang got out of the inning with a strikeout, leaving the bases loaded for the Pioneers. In the bottom of the inning, junior Stewart Martens had a pinch-hit single to center field. Goldstick hit a two-out single and Golembo walked to load the bases, but a high flyout ended the game and gave Grinnell the extra-inning victory.

Washington U. outhit Grinnell 16-13 in the game, but the Bears left a season-high 15 runners on base, including six in the final two innings. Price, who made his first career start at second base, finished 2-for-6 with five RBIs and a run scored. Kessinger (3-for-5, run) and Deger (3-for-4, two RBIs) had three hits each, while Golembo reached base a team-high five times (2-for-4, three walks, run). Bonser threw five complete innings, allowing eight runs, including seven earned, on seven hits and four walks. Gollin (1-1) took the loss, despite allowing just one earned run on four hits in five innings of relief. He also threw a season-high four strikeouts. Zhang pitched the final inning for the Bears, allowing two hits and striking out two.

Washington U. (7-11) returns to action with a pair of home games Sunday. The Bears face St. Norbert College at Noon, followed by a second game against Grinnell at 3 p.m. at Kelly Field.

Bear Notebook: Washington U. was 2-for-10 with the bases loaded, and 0-for-5 with a runner on third with less than two outs … It was the sixth time this season the Bears have stranded 10 or more baserunners… Golembo reached base safely for the 18th game in a row … Lowery extended his hitting streak to 12 games, while Kessinger recorded a hit for the 10th straight game.