Whits Let 9-8 Baseball Decision Slip Away

News Release Date:
Sunday, February 22

WALLA WALLA, Wash. -- After Whitman College bounced back from a nightmarish first inning to grab an 8-7 lead, Puget Sound scored single runs in two of its last three at-bats for a 9-8 non-conference victory Sunday afternoon in McMinnville, Ore.

The loss dropped Whitman to 1-5 on the season while Puget Sound evened its slate at 2-2.

Jason Sease

Whitman took a 1-0 lead in the top of the first when freshman Patrick Stauffer singled to center, advanced to second on a Calvin Davis sacrifice bunt and later scored when Jay Richards grounded out. In the bottom of the frame, two of the first three Puget Sound batters reached on Whitman errors to set the stage of a big inning. The Missionaries were guilty of two more errors as the Loggers plated five runs before the inning was over.

Whitman came right back with three runs in the top of second. Michael Lazcano and Sam Schonfeld led off with singles, but Lazcano was picked off second. Brian Kitamura doubled home one run, took third on Stauffer's single and scored when Davis grounded out. Richards then poked an RBI-single down the right-field line to trim Whitman's deficit to 5-4.

A two-out, two-run single in the bottom of the third pushed Puget Sound's lead to 7-4.

Singles by Schonfeld, Davis and Richards produced Whitman's fifth run in the fourth inning. In their next turn at bat, the Missionaries scored three times to take an 8-7 lead. Jason Sease and Erik Korsmo triggered the rally with singles and scored on Lazcano's double to right. Lazcano moved to third on Kitamura's single and then scored when Kitamura drew a throw while stealing second base.  

Puget Sound used a double and run-scoring single to knot the score at 8-8 in the bottom of the sixth. The Loggers scored what proved to be the game-winning run in the eighth, combining two singles, one base on balls and an RBI-sacrifice flyball to left field.

Whitman left two runners stranded in both the sixth and eighth innings. Lazcano, who was hit by a pitch to open the Missionary ninth, moved to second on Schonfeld's sacrifice bunt. He was unable to advance any further as Puget Sound recorded the final two outs on a strike-out and pop fly to the catcher.

Whitman outhit Puget Sound 19-10 but left a total of 11 runners stranded. Sease, Korsmo and Kitamura led the attack with three hits each. Four Missionaries -- Stauffer, Richards, Lazcano and Schonfeld -- added two hits apiece. Richards collected 3 RBI while Lazcano had two more. Stauffer and Kitamura scored two runs each.

Puget Sound used four different pitchers, but Whitman's Blaine Mercado went the distance on the hill, scattering 10 hits over eight innings.

Whitman wraps up its non-conference, and plays its home opener, next Thursday when it hosts Central Washington at Borleske Stadium. The single nine-inning game is set for a 4 p.m. start. 

Box Score

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