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Titans Defeated By Pointers In WIAC Home Opener

Noah Polcyn had three hits against the Pointers, including a pair of doubles.
Noah Polcyn had three hits against the Pointers, including a pair of doubles.

UW-Stevens Point remained the lone unbeaten WIAC baseball team with a 5-3 win over nationally ranked UW-Oshkosh on Thursday (April 12) at Tiedemann Field.

The Pointers, who never trailed after taking a 2-0 lead in the top of the second inning, pulled out the victory despite being held to just three hits through seven innings. UW-Oshkosh, which collected eight hits, left eight runners on base while UW-Stevens Point stranded two. UW-Stevens Point had four doubles among its six hits.

UW-Stevens Point (15-4, 7-0 WIAC) remains atop the WIAC standings while UW-Oshkosh (14-4, 1-2), ranked 16th in the NCAA Division III by D3baseball.com, is in fourth place after falling in its league home opener.

Christian Zamudio gave the Pointers a 2-0 advantage with a two-run double in the second frame.

UW-Stevens Point starting pitcher Cole Erickson made the early lead hold up, improving his season record to 4-0 after allowing three runs and scattering 11 hits in 7.1 innings. He walked two and struck out five.

Alex Stodola picked up his WIAC-leading fifth save of the season with 1.2 scoreless innings.

UW-Oshkosh pulled within 2-1 in the home half of the second inning on a solo home run from Jensen Hinton, but the Pointers added a run in the fifth frame as Ben Faga hit a leadoff double, advanced to third base on a errant pickoff attempt and scored on a sacrifice fly by Zamudio.

The Titans cut their deficit to 3-2 in the bottom of the fifth inning, when Sam Schwenn lifted a sacrifice fly that plated Noah Polcyn.

UW-Stevens Point scored the decisive run in the eighth inning on back-to-back hits. Will Iloncaie laced a one-out double ahead of a run-scoring single from Kyle Mrozinski.

UW-Oshkosh had consecutive hits of its own in the eighth inning that concluded Erickson's strong outing. Alex Koch singled and Dylan Ott doubled off the left-field wall to put two Titans in scoring position with one out. However, Stodola limited UW-Oshkosh to just one run in the frame as a groundball to second base off the bat of Brahier scored Koch, but Pointers first baseman Lucas Luedtke preserved a one-run lead by firing to third base to nab Ott attempting to advance on the play.

The Pointers tacked on an insurance run in the ninth inning with an RBI double from Payton Nelson.

UW-Oshkosh brought the winning run to the plate in the bottom of the ninth frame as Polcyn was hit by a Stodola pitch with two outs and pinch-hitter Zack Radde followed with a single. Stodola then secured the Pointer win by inducing a groundout.

Polcyn went 3-for-3 with a pair of doubles to lead the Titans.

UW-Oshkosh starting pitcher Jesse Sustachek suffered the loss, allowing four runs (three earned) on five hits across 7.1 innings while walking three and striking out four.

The Titans remain at home to face Illinois Institute of Technology for doubleheaders on Saturday and Sunday (April 14-15) at Tiedemann Field.

Photo courtesy of Tim Bohn, UW-Stevens Point