Sauget, Ill., April 12, 2017 – Junior Conor O'Hara connected on his second home run of the season in the second inning to help the No. 16-ranked Washington University in St. Louis baseball team out to an early lead but the Bears ultimately fell to Webster University 5-3 Wednesday evening at the GCS Ballpark.
WashU's nine-game winning streak concluded as the team fell to 16-6 on the season while Webster improved to 17-7. O'Hara and senior Ben Browdy led the Bears with two hits apiece as the Bears concluded the game with five hits total. Browdy increased his career doubles total to 33, two away from tying Joe Kelly (2003-04) for 10th all-time in WashU history.
Senior Pitchers Bill Heisler and Matt Clohisy kept the Gorloks from scoring in the final three innings but the Bears were unable to overcome the two run deficit. The tandem combined for six of the Bears eight strikeouts as well.
The Bears gained momentum early on as junior right fielder Auggie Mense made a tremendous sliding catch into the wall for the final out of the first inning as Webster had two runners on base. O'Hara followed suit with a two-out line drive homer that cleared the 25-foot wall in left field to put WashU ahead 1-0.
The Gorloks quickly struck back with a run of their own in the bottom half of the frame. After a hit-by-pitch, Jake Milosch advanced to second on a passed ball and then third base on a throwing error during a failed pickoff attempt by sophomore John Howard. A single by Joe Swanson evened the score at 1-1 heading into the third.
Browdy continued his on-base streak to 41-games with a double to left center and he was able to advance the next 180-feet on two wild pitches to give the Bears a 2-1 advantage. The lead was short-lived as Webster scored their own run on a wild pitch. The Gorloks had an opportunity to take the lead but senior Scott Nelson worked around two inherited runners to keep the score knotted at 2-2.
For the third consecutive inning the Bears took a one-run lead. This time WashU scored on a fielding error by the first baseman when Mense sharply grounded a ball to the second baseman with two runners on and two outs. Freshman catcher Thomas Gardner scored on the play when Webster's first baseman was unable to handle the low throw to first.
Once again the Gorloks had an answer and this time took the lead in the bottom half of the inning. Webster's first baseman, Kyle Ulrich, atoned for his fielding error with a two-run double which flipped the one-run disadvantage to a one-run lead. Senior Jake Mintz's streak of 15 consecutive outings without allowing a run came to a close when a wild pitch allowed Eric Outlaw to score the final run of the game.
Mintz threw a scoreless fifth inning before Heisler and Clohisy pitched the final three scoreless frames for the Bears. Nelson was saddled with his first loss of the season after pitching one-plus innings allowing two runs.
Senior first baseman Ted Daley was the only other WashU player to reach base with a hit when he singled to right field in the second inning after O'Hara's homer.
The Bears return to action Friday in Cleveland, Ohio at 3 p.m. (ET) against Case Western Reserve University in the opening University Athletic Association (UAA) contest of a four-game series. Be sure to stay up to date on all your Bears scores and awards by following @WashUBears on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.