Copyright 2016; Wilmington University. All rights reserved. File photo of Dan Hyatt agaisnt Dominican, taken by Joseph Craig.
NEWARK, N.J. - - The Wilmington University baseball team hit three home runs in a Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference doubleheader but only managed a split, 7-4 and 2-4, against Bloomfield on Wednesday afternoon at West Side Park.
Freshman Dan Hyatt broke the ice and hit the Wildcats' (10-18, 8-2 CACC) first home run of the season in the top of the first inning of game one before junior Jesse Long capped the scoring in the top of the seventh. Junior Rocky Ferrier added to the home run numbers in the nightcap, hitting a solo shot to right in the top of the sixth.
But the Wildcats weren't the team to find the other side of the fence, as the Bears (7-19, 4-8 CACC) hit four home runs in the doubleheader as well.
The Wildcats got off to a quick start in the opener, scoring four runs in the top of the first inning. With runners on second and third, Max Carney started the scoring with a sacrifice fly to right to score Ferrier from third. Brooks Ryan added to the lead with a two-out RBI single before Hyatt launched a two-run homer to right for a fast 4-0 lead.
Julian Kurych led off the third inning with a single and came around to score on a Christian Adorno triple to left center. Adorno then trotted home as Carney added another RBI with a single through the right side and the 6-0 lead.
But the Bears quickly got back into the game, hitting a leadoff homer, a double, and a two-run homer in three consecutive batters in the third to cut the deficit in half. Another solo homer in the bottom of the sixth brought the Bears to within 6-4, but starter Jay Kluka and relievers Mike Torres and Kyle Menchaca would hold them there.
Long's solo homer in the seventh gave the Wildcats a 7-4 lead before Kluka finished off his outing with a 1-2-3 bottom of the seventh. Torres came on for a scoreless eighth inning before Menchaca stranded a pair in the bottom of the ninth for his fifth save of the year.
Kluka struck out eight batters in seven innings, moving to 3-1 on the season. Adorno led all Wildcats with three hits in the opener.
It looked as though the Wildcats were going to crack the scoreboard once again in the first inning of the nightcap, but the Bears were able to get out of the jam and strand two runners.
Bloomfield picked up single runs in the bottom of the first, third and fourth innings, getting a leadoff homer in the bottom of the fourth.
The Wildcats got one back in the bottom of the sixth, as Ferrier blasted his first home run as a Wildcat, cutting the deficit to 3-1. But the Bears grew the lead back to 4-1 with another run in the bottom of the sixth to keep the Wildcats at an arm's reach.
The Wildcats had an opportunity in the top of the seventh inning, as Ryan Walked and Hyatt doubled to start the inning. The double chased Ryan home from first, but Hyatt was thrown out at third trying to stretch the hit into a triple. Frank Nigro hit a two-out double, but the Wildcats couldn't bring him home to still trail, 4-2.
A two-out rally in the top of the ninth nearly erased the deficit, as an error kept the Wildcats alive. Nick Macey walked to put the tying run on first base, but the Bears induced a foul out to end the threat, and the game.
Zach Rumford fell to 1-4 on the year after pitching the first six innings, allowing four runs on nine hits. Noah Latshaw tossed the final two innings, striking out three and only allowing two hits and two walks.
Kurych was the only Wildcat with multiple hits in the nightcap, going 2-for-4 with a double.
Wilmington's week concludes on Saturday, as they host Chestnut Hill for a crucial CACC doubleheader at Wilson Field. Saturday is also Military Appreciation Day with special festivities scheduled during pregame. The first pitch is scheduled for 12:00 p.m.