Baseball annihilated in San Diego tournament 1-7

 Sports Editor

Baseball finished out their eight game tournament in San Diego 1-7 before starting another three game series in Seaside, California, Saturday Feb. 13-15.

The Wolves met Point Loma Nazarene University of San Diego on Thursday, Feb. 5 for their four game match-up, tied at three after nine innings, the match-up would be resumed on Friday. After two extra innings, the Wolves fell 4-3 after a
walk-off home run with two outs in the bottom of the 12th before the next nine innings of game two.

“The team is really focusing on trusting the process and the plan our coaches have set for us,” said infielder Garrett Harpole.

During Friday’s game, the Wolves out-hit PLNU 14-10 but despite statistics, PLNU was able to score five runs in the second inning, giving them a 9-4 edge at the end of nine innings.

Western was led by infielder Marcus Hinkle who went 4-for-4 and two runs. Outfielder’s Matt Taylor and Cody Sullivan had three hits each while first baseman Nathan Etheridge batted in two PLNU players.

Lefty pitcher Clark McKitrick started early for the Wolves, only allowing six runs, two earned, on two hits. Pitcher and lefty pitcher Michael Bennett and Spencer Trautmann added 6.1 innings together only allowing three runs on eight hits, striking out five.

Hinkle would put the Wolves on the board in the top of the third after Etheridge’s single to bring him home from third. Sullivan went to hit a double
in the top of the seventh, bringing in Etheridge from second. The last two runs came in the top of the eighth with a single by Taylor, bringing in Harpole and Hinkle off a sacrifice fly by Etheridge.

The doubleheader was played on Feb. 7 where the Wolves won 17-0 and then lost the last game 2-0. In the first game, Taylor led the Wolves with a 4-for-6 performance at the plate. Harpole had six runners batted in and went 3-for-4 while Hinkle also added three hits in the first game victory.

The second game of the double header did not see the same scoring abilities from the Wolves, unable to capitalize in the top of the second in scoring position and PLNU unable to score until the sixth inning, the second game of the doubleheader and the last game in the eight game tournament ended 2-0 in favor of PLNU.

“We obviously didn’t get off to the start that we were looking for,” said head coach Kellen Walker. “This is a tough group. We will make the adjustments that we need to in order to get this thing where it needs to be.”

The Wolves will travel back to California on Friday, Feb. 13 for a four-game series in Seaside against California State University Monterey Bay starting at 2 p.m.

“I think going into this weekend we need to understand that as much as this is a team sport, we individually need to have success in crucial situations,” Taylor said. “Offensively, we need to get guys on and manufacture runs by moving runners over early in the game. Defensively, we need to take care of the ball and throw
strikes. We are confident we are the better team, we just need to show up from pitch one.”