Washington Evening Journal
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IW baseball rallies back
Catala walks off HLGU in Game 1, Tigers erupt in Game 2
MT. PLEASANT — It certainly wasn’t easy for the Iowa Wesleyan baseball team on Wednesday, but the Tigers had just enough spark in their bats to pull out a pair of wins.
The Tigers scored a walk-off 5-4 winner in Game 1 over visiting Hannibal-Lagrange University, and one game later, they stormed back from five runs down to win 8-7.
Iowa Wesleyan had blown a 3-1 lead in the first game, as HLGU put together three runs in the fifth to take a 4-3 advantage, but the Tigers stormed back in their final at-bat.
Sage Bonner got things going for the Tigers with a one-out single, and then advanced to third on a single by Gabriel Hernandez. That put runners on the corner for former New London prep Holvin Catala.
Catala got ahold of one and sent it past the Trojan outfield. Bonner scored easily, and pinch runner Grant Yates zoomed around third base and scored standing up, sparking a celebration that eventually poured out onto the field.
“I really didn't like the effort in the first game,” said Tiger head coach Blake Beaber. “We pitched it well enough and defense was fine, but we just had no energy. We found a way to battle back and walk it off.”
Carlos Vicente was 1-for-3 with a home run and two RBIs in the game for Iowa Wesleyan. Colvin had two RBIs, and Bonner finished the game a perfect 2-for-2. Conner Deutsch was 1-for-3 with a triple and a run scored.
Joey Withers threw 4.1 innings and gave up four earned runs on five hits and four walks in his start. Tavares Tim and Ian Clements combined for 2.2 shut out innings to help the Tigers claw back.
The Tigers had to play catch up again in Game 2, as HLGU held a 5-0 lead after the top of the fifth, but Iowa Wesleyan once again had enough to put together a big fun.
Froymer Ortega ended the shut out with an RBI ground out in the fifth inning to cut the Trojans’ lead to 5-1. Then, in the sixth, the Tigers put together a seven-run inning to take the lead.
During the rally, Vicente collected two RBIs on a single. Sucre Guzman and Catala each brought home one run, and D Marrufo seemingly put the final nail in the coffin with a two RBI single of his own.
And only seemingly it was, as HLGU did put together a threat in the bottom of the seventh. The Trojans scored two runs after loading the bases with nobody out, but Clements closed the door for the Tigers and Iowa Wesleyan was victorious.
“As always, we can't win a game with a 1-2-3 inning,” joked Beaber after the game. “We have to make it interesting, but at least we get out of here with two.”
Vicente went 2-for-5 with two RBIs in the win. Marrufo went 1-for-4 with two RBIs. Bonner had another 2-for-2 performance, and Guzman went 2-for-4 with an RBI and two runs scored.