Sat, Mar 24, 2012 - [Baseball]
MOUNT PLEASANT - Jacob Sanchez (Sr.-Brawley, Calif.) and Erik Allen (Sr.-Monrovia, Calif.) stood tall on the mound and the Iowa Wesleyan College baseball team asserted itself with a pair of shutout wins over Ashford University in a Midwest Collegiate Conference doubleheader Saturday afternoon at the Mapleleaf Athletic Complex.
Sanchez went the whole way as IWC defeated the Saints 1-0 in the opener, and Allen followed with six strong innings as the Tigers rolled to an 8-0 win in the second game. Wesleyan extended its winning streak to five games and improved to 16-13 overall and 5-1 in the MCC.
Sanchez outdueled Ashford starter Zach Smerz in the first game, allowing just three hits while striking out ten in his sixth complete game in seven starts. Smerz allowed just five hits while striking out two and walking two, but the Tigers broke through for the lone run of the game in the fifth inning.
Ryan Doeppel (Jr.-Arcadia, Calif.) led off the inning with a single and stole second base, then advanced to third on a single by Andrew Jurgesmeyer (Sr.-Mexico, Mo.). Marco Prieto (Sr.-Toa Baja, Puerto Rico) followed by grounding into a 6-4-3 double play, but Doeppel came in to score, and the run held up as Sanchez stranded a runner at second with one out in the sixth and then set down the Saints in order in the seventh.
Allen was almost as strong in the second game as Sanchez was in the first. The right-hander allowed four hits over six innings, striking out three and walking one. He also received good run support as the Tigers scored four runs in the first inning on the strength of just three hits and two Saints errors.
Allen pitched out of a jam in the third inning as Ashford loaded the bases with nobody out. Michael Caravia lined out to right field and Damil Reyes struck out, and Ryan Fraley followed with a line drive that third baseman Bobby Lloyd (Sr.-Coalinga, Calif.) made a diving stab of on the fly for the third out of the inning.
The Tigers added three more runs in the fourth inning and another in the fifth to cruise to the victory. Michael Mendoza (Sr.-San Gabriel, Calif.) had two hits and two RBIs and Doeppel and Todd Christensen (Sr.-Redondo Beach, Calif.) both scored a pair of runs. Doeppel also stole a pair of bases and a total of three on the day to raise his team-leading total of steals to thirteen.
Pat Macaione took the loss for Ashford (11-19 overall, 3-4 MCC) in the second game, going 2 2/3 innings and allowing three hits and four runs (one earned) while striking out a pair. Tim Elias came on and finished the game, allowing four runs and four hits in 3 1/3 innings.
The Tigers look to complete the weekend series sweep when they host the Saints again Sunday afternoon for a single nine-inning game at 1 p.m. at the Mapleleaf Athletic Complex.
Box score Game 1 IWC 1 Ashford 0
Box score Game 2 IWC 8 Ashford 0