WHITEWATER -- UW-Whitewater pitching owned the day Saturday, keying the Warhawks' doubleheader sweep of UW-Stevens Point, 5-2 and 5-3, Saturday at Jim Miller Stadium at Prucha Field in Whitewater. UW-Whitewater, ranked eleventh in all three national Division III polls, improved to 17-3 overall and 8-0 in the Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference. Stevens Point, ranked twenty-third in the D3baseball.com poll, is 12-5 and 4-2 in league play.
The Pointers broke out on top in game one, combining a Warhawk error, a walk and a RBI single by Casey Barnes for a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first. (This doubleheader was scheduled to be played at Point, but wet conditions moved the game to Whitewater. UW-SP remained the "home" team,)
Pointer starter J.P. Feyereisen and Warhawk righthander Tom Kerndt took over from there, putting up zeros until the fifth, when senior Ryan Schilter's two out double edged the UW-SP lead to 2-0.
Like a light switch clicking, things turned in the top of the seventh for UW-W. Marty Herum led off the inning with his fourth home run of the season to cut the deficit to 2-1. Mikole Pierce stroked the next pitch to center, one hop to the fence, for a double. Pierce moved to third on a sacrifice and scored on a wild pitch to knot the game 2-2.
Warhawk Dylan Friend led off the eighth with a triple, and Whitewater took its first lead, 3-2, scoring what proved to be the winning run on a Jaren Fon sacrifice fly.
The Pointers threatened in the bottom of the eighth, putting runners on first and second with two outs, when Kerndt gave the ball to Curtis Morgan. Morgan induced a ground out to end the threat.
UW-W tacked on a pair of runs in the ninth. After loading the bases with a walk, a fielder's choice that did not retire anyone, and another walk, Fon's sacrifice fly to center brought in one run and Herum followed with a RBI single to end the scoring.
Kerndt picked up the win, upping his record to 3-1, giving up seven hits with two walks and four strikeouts. Morgan earned his first save. Friend and Herum collected two hits each for UW-W, four of the team's six total. Schilter collected two of the Pointers' eight hits. Feyereisen, 1-2, took the loss, yielding five hits and one walk, while striking out six.
Justin Lambert, the Warhawk starter in game two, kept the Pointers off the board for the first six innings.
Meanwhile, UW-W took a lead in the second inning on a Herum walk and Steve Bartlein's one out double. Whitewater added another run in the third with a double play ground ball with the bases loaded to lead 2-0.
In the sixth UW-W put men on first with a single and then on second with a walk. JT Schneider bounced a ball to the right of second base that went for an infield hit, but a UW-W runner came home when the UW-SP fielder made a bad throw trying to get a runner at second to put UW-W in front 3-0.
Sean Gerber's double and two ground outs put the Pointers on the board in the seventh, 3-1.
Herum led off the eighth with a single, and Mikole Pierce followed with his second home run of the second, to right center, to boost the Whitewater lead to 5-1.
Point made it interesting in the ninth. Dan Douglas and Gerber doubled for one run, making it 5-2. Jimmy Coady singled to put runners at first and third with one out. Casey Barnes brought in a run with a sacrifice fly to edge closer at 5-3. Coady stole second, and Bobby Gregorich singled to put runners at the corners with two outs. Brock Liston came on for Lambert to strike out designated hitter Brandon Krantz and end the game.
Lambert, 4-1, gave up nine hits in his stint, with three strikeouts. He did not walk a batter. Jacob Herbst, 4-1, took the loss for UW-SP. Herum, Bartlein and JT Schneider had two hits apiece for Whitewater. Gerber went 3x4 for the Pointers.
UW-W and UW-SP will get together again for another pair of games Sunday at 12:00 at Jim Miller Stadium at Prucha Field.
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