Kotin and Mintz Propel No. 16 WashU to Split at Case

Kotin and Mintz Propel No. 16 WashU to Split at Case

Cleveland, Ohio, April 15, 2017 – The No. 16 ranked Washington University in St. Louis baseball team garnered another doubleheader split against Case Western Reserve University Saturday afternoon, posting a 5-0 shutout victory before falling 10-1 in the second game at Nobby's Ballpark.

By splitting the four-game series, the Bears are 18-8 overall with a 6-2 University Athletic Association (UAA) record, while Case Western sits behind the Bears with an 11-5 UAA record.

After senior Brad Margolin tossed a complete game shutout in yesterday's 1-0 win, sophomore Zack Kotin followed in his footsteps with 6 1/3 shutout innings, conceding just two hits and a walk while striking out five in the Bears opening win.

Game 1: WashU 5, Case 0
After a one-hour rain delay, the Bears jumped out to an early 1-0 lead in the top of the first inning. Senior Austin Darmawan belted a leadoff double down the left field line before coming around to score on an RBI double by senior Ben Browdy. One batter later, freshman John Brinkman nearly extended the lead with a single to right field, but Browdy was thrown out at home to end the threat.

Key situational hitting enabled the Bears to double their lead in the fourth inning. Browdy and senior Christian Santos started the inning with a pair of singles before Brinkman advanced runners to second and third with a sac bunt. Then, junior Conor O'Hara plated Browdy with a sac fly to centerfield. 

The Red and Green followed a similar formula in the fifth inning to extend their advantage to 3-0. Senior Tate Maider crushed a leadoff double down the left field line and advanced to third on a sac bunt by Darmawan. Junior Auggie Mense recorded his eighth RBI of the season with a sac fly to centerfield.

The Bears added two insurance runs in the ninth as Browdy registered his third hit and second RBI of the game with a double to left field. In total, the Bears tallied 10 hits, with seniors Browdy, Santos and Darmawan breaking through with multi-hit performances.

On the mound, Kotin (3-2, 2.70 ERA) kept the Spartans' bats at bay with 6 1/3 shutout innings, allowing just one baserunner to reach scoring position. Senior Jake Mintz preserved the shutout with his second save to lower his team-leading ERA to 0.72.

Game 2: Case 10, WashU 1
Case started the second game with a bang as Chris Shorter clubbed a solo homerun to left center in the bottom of the first. The Bears responded with small ball to tie the game in the third inning. Freshman John Ostrander opened the inning with a bunt single before advancing to second on a sac bunt by Darmawan. Ostrander then stole third base and scored on a fielder's choice by Santos. 

The tie didn't last long, however, as the Spartans relied on the long ball to stake a commanding 6-1 lead after five. Tony Damiano belted a three-run homer in the third, while Shorter hit his second homer of the day with a two-run shot in the fifth. Case added four runs in the final three innings to secure the 10-1 victory.

Overall, the Bears strung together five hits as Darmawan and O'Hara each went 2-for-4 at the plate. Browdy drew a walk to extend his on-base streak to 45 games.

On the mound, senior Scott Nelson (2-2, 3.82 ERA) tossed four innings, allowing four runs on four hits and two walks while striking out three.

WashU will look to stay on top of the UAA standings when it concludes its nine-game road trip with four UAA games at Brandeis University beginning on Friday.