Cougars Drop Heartbreaker in Bottom of the Ninth; Bow Out of World Series
Grand Chute, Wis. (5/26/12) – A two out, two RBI single with the bases loaded in the bottom of the ninth gave Webster University the win in a wild see-saw battle that eliminated the Kean University baseball team from the 2012 NCAA Division III Baseball Championship tournament by the final of 8-7.
With the loss, the Cougars finish the season with a 37-12 record.
Kean broke through first, scoring two in their half of the third. With runners in scoring position and one out, sophomore Shane Alvarez grounded out for the first run of the inning. Senior Vinny Galya added another with an RBI single back up the middle, giving Kean a 2-0 lead.
Junior Mitchell Bonds pulled Webster (36-13) within one with a solo shot in the Gorloks' half of the fourth for his second homerun of the season.
Webster took the lead with two runs in the bottom of the sixth, all with two outs. Sophomore Kevin Kojs delivered the big blow, with a bases loaded, two RBI single. The Gorloks added two more in the seventh, using three hits off reliever Matt Mantione to take a 5-2 lead.
Kean kept battling in the top of the eighth as the Cougars took advantage of a mental miscue from Webster catcher Matt Moore. With two outs and a runner on second, senior Steve Sanguiliano struck out on a ball in the dirt. Moore elected to try and throw out Alvarez who broke for third, but Alvarez turned around and broke back to second, with no one covering, extending the inning with runners now aboard at first and second. Senior Eddie Jennings got things started with an RBI single through the left side bringing Kean closer at 5-3. Senior Dylan Laguna kept things going with a bloop RBI single to left to put the score at 5-4. A wild pitch put runners on the corners and Laguna later broke for second. Webster elected to throw down to second as Laguna was safe, however Jennings broke for home with no one covering the plate, scoring easily from third. An errant throw back to the plate, let Laguna score all the way from second to take a 6-5 lead.
Webster wasn't done, scoring a single run in the bottom of the eighth with two outs to tie things right back up. Sophomore Taylor Stoulp provided the two out RBI single up the middle.
The Cougars didn't back down and added a single run in the top of the ninth as junior Nick Ramagli provided a one out single. Infielder Tyler Smarslok added a single of his own, putting Ramagli into scoring position at second. Alvarez came up big with a single to left to give Kean a 7-6 lead.
The Gorloks kept the pressure on in the bottom of the ninth as back-to-back one out singles put the tying and winning runs aboard. Sanguiliano on for his second inning of relief, then got Webster to fly out for the second out of the inning. Webster didn't stop fighting, working a two out walk to load the bases. Kean appeared to end the game on a close 1-2 pitch, but two pitches later Stoulp became the hero, lining a two RBI single down the rightfield line, sending Webster to the win.
Senior Ryan Zamorsky earned a no-decision allowing three runs and nine hits in six innings of work while recording a season-high nine strikeouts. Sanguiliano suffered the loss in relief. He allowed three runs and six hits in one and two thirds innings of work.