Mercado Throws Eight Strong, Whits Lose

News Release Date:
Sunday, February 28

WALLA WALLA, Wash. -- Unable to capitalize on a complete-game effort by starting pitcher Blaine Mercado, Whitman College dropped a 5-3 decision to Puget Sound Sunday afternoon at the Jim Doran Classic in McMinnville, Ore.

With Mercado holding the Loggers to three hits and two runs (one of them unearned) through four innings, Whitman scored three runs on four hits to grab a one-run lead in the top of the fifth inning.

Mercado doubled to trigger the rally. Jason Sease rapped a run-scoring single up the middle and took second base on the throw home, but was thrown out at third base when Joe Rodhouse lifted a flyball to right field.

Mitch Hannoosh followed with a single and scored when Jay Richards doubled into the right-centerfield gap. Richards then tallied the third Missionary run as Patrick Stauffer reached base on a Puget Sound error.

Mercado retired the Loggers in order in their half of the fifth, but Puget Sound evened the game at 3-3 with another unearned run in the bottom of the sixth. Matt Cox doubled with one out, scooted into third base on a passed ball and scored on a sacrifice fly. 

After surrendering just six hits through seven innings, Mercado tired in the eighth. After giving up two singles to start the inning, Mercado scooped up an attempted sacrifice bunt and threw out the lead runner at third.

But Will Mentor's RBI-single put the Loggers in front 4-3. Puget Sound added an insurance on an infield ground-out.

Stauffer had two of Whitman's seven hits and swiped two bases. While scattering nine hits, Mercado struck out three and walked two.

Whitman and Puget Sound meet again in less than a week to kick off the Northwest Conference season. A three-game series starts at 11 a.m. next Saturday with a doubleheader at Whitman's Borleske Stadium. The third game is set for noon Sunday.

Box Score

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CONTACT: Dave Holden
Sports Information Director
Whitman College, Walla Walla, Wash.
509 527-5902; holden@whitman.edu