Baseball Drops a Pair in Arizona

Ryan Rizzo went 3-7 with a double, triple, run scored and two RBI.
Ryan Rizzo went 3-7 with a double, triple, run scored and two RBI.

The Panther baseball team was back in action on Monday, taking on Westminster (Mo.) and Gustavus Adolphus (3-7) in a pair of games in Arizona. In game one, the Blue Jays' (10-5) offense exploded during a 29-8 win over the Panthers. In the second game of the day, the Golden Gusties scored in the bottom of the ninth to pick up a 10-9 victory.

The Westminster bats were too much for Middlebury, pounding out 23 hits resulting in 29 runs with 11 extra-base hits.

Middlebury took a 1-0 lead in the first when Max Araya walked, moved to second on a single to left from Joe MacDonald and scored on a single to center by Phil Bernstein.

Westminster scored six in the second and three in the third to take a 10-1 lead before the Panthers struck with four in the bottom of the third. Jake Turtel singled to left, Araya walked and both runners advanced on a wild pitch. MacDonald drove in Turtel with a single to left, while Bernstein plated Araya with another base hit to left. MacDonald later scored on a fielder's choice, while John Tipps drove in Brendan Donohue with a single to right.

Leading 10-5, the Blue Jays blew the game wide open with seven in the fourth and eight runs in the fifth to lead 25-5.

Middlebury plated a pair of runs in the fifth, as Donohue and Ryan Rizzo singled before Tipps doubled to left to drive in Donohue. One batter later, Rizzo scored on a ground out by Turtel.

Westminster added two in the sixth and a pair of tallies in the seventh before the Panthers closed the scoring with a solo run in the bottom of the seventh.

MacDonald finished 3-5 with a run and an RBI, while Bernstein went 3-4 and drove in three runs. Donahue also had three hits, going 3-3 with a double and two runs scored, while Tipps was 2-4 with a double and two RBI.

Johnny Read (0-1) took the loss, allowing six runs on one hit with four walks over 1.1 innings. Mark Dickerson and Ben Karlin logged innings in relief for the Panthers.

Delon Hughes earned the win for the Blue Jays, allowing seven runs on 11 hits over five innings of work. Tyler Branneky led the Westminster hitters, going 4-6 with two doubles, two homers, four RBI and three runs scored.

In game two, Middlebury jumped out to a 2-0 lead over Gustavus Adolphus in the top of the first inning. With two outs, Araya singled to left, MacDonald singled to center and John Luke had a base hit to center to load the bases. Jason Lock delivered with another single to center, driving in Araya. Sam Graf followed with a bases-loaded walk as MacDonald crossed the plate for a 2-0 lead.

The Golden Gusties answered with two of their own in the bottom of the inning to knot the game at 2-2.

The Panthers added a run in the third when Luke reached on an error and later scored on a double to left by Rizzo.

The Golden Gusties struck for six in the fourth to take an 8-3 lead, but the Panthers battled back in the fifth with a four spot.

With the bases loaded, Spencer Tonies doubled to center to plate Graf, who had singled and Sebastian Sanchez, who had walked earlier in the inning. Araya reached on an error to score a run, before MacDonald's sacrifice fly drove in Tonies.

The Panthers knotted the game at 8-8 in the sixth when Rizzo tripled to left with two outs and scored on a single to right by Sanchez.  

Gustavus Adolphus scored in the bottom of the eighth to take a 9-8 advantage. Two singles and a double set up Sam Warner, who doubled in Daniel Carlson.

Sanchez reached on an error to lead off the ninth for the Panthers before being sacrificed to second on a bunt from Donohue. A single to right by Tonies placed runners on first and third, setting up an RBI ground out from Araya to knot the contest at 9-9.

Thomas Logan doubled to lead off the bottom of the ninth for Gustavus Adolphus and moved to third on a wild pitch before a flyout and an intentional walk. Dylan Takomori came on in relief of Jack Bunting, but Josh Chatfield reached on a fielder's choice as Logan crossed the plate with the game-winning run.

Bunting (0-2) took the loss in 2.1 innings of relief, after 2.1 innings of scoreless pitching from Colby Morris.

Hitters 6-9 in the Middlebury order (Lock, Graf, Rizzo, Sanchez) each finished with two hits, one run scored and one run batted in. Araya was 3-6 with a run and two RBI, while Tonies finished 2-6 with a run and a pair driven in.

Jayme Munsterman earned the win for Gustavus Adolphus, while Carlson went 3-4 with three runs scored and Warner doubled twice, plating three runs.