CHICAGO – Stellar efforts on the mound by the starting pitchers led the University of Chicago baseball team to wins of 6-1 and 6-0 against Finlandia University on an overcast Friday afternoon.
The Maroons improved to 15-7 while the Lions fell to 4-14.
Senior outfielder Maximiliano Larsen made history on Friday as well. The lefty's two doubles gave him a school-record 51 for his career. The previous UChicago record holder was Kyle Engel with 50 doubles from 2012-15.
Game One – UChicago 6, Finlandia 1
Finlandia plated its only run of the day in the opening inning. A double and single put runners at the corners, and a double steal brought the runner across the plate.
That was as much trouble as Brenton Villasenor (2-2 record) would encounter for the rest of the game. With his trademark swift setup and delivery, the junior right-handed pitcher got into a groove and mowed down the Lions. Villasenor set a new career high with 12 strikeouts in his seven-inning complete game. He only allowed four hits, while fanning multiple batters in an inning four times.
UChicago quickly responded in its half of the first frame. The opening four batters tallied hits, with outfielders Larsen and junior Josh Parks cracking RBI doubles to left center. A third run came through on a wild pitch.
Another wild pitch in the third inning scored sophomore Payton Jancsy following his triple to right field. Junior first baseman Brady Sarkon made it 5-0 with a RBI single through the right side. Senior catcher Matt Slodzinski ended the scoring in the bottom of the sixth with a RBI single to right.
The Maroons tallied nine hits and one error in the seven-inning contest. Larsen and Jancsy collected two hits apiece.
Game Two – UChicago 6, Finlandia 0
Rain shortened the day's second game to five innings. This time it was Jacob Petersen's turn to shine on the mound. The sophomore righty scattered four hits and racked up a career-best nine strikeouts. He improved his season record to 5-2.
Finlandia threatened in the top of the fourth with a pair of singles to start. But Petersen buckled down with a strikeout and two flyouts to end it.
First-year second baseman James Kelly lofted a sacrifice fly to deep left field in the second inning for the game's first run. UChicago then broke out in the fourth inning with five more. Sarkon smacked a RBI double, and sophomore third baseman Drew Ventrelle added an RBI single up the middle. First-year shortstop Brian Lyle's bunt single scored the runner from third, and a throwing error by the pitcher on the play brought Ventrelle all the way around from first base. Larsen provided the coda with a RBI double – his team-leading 14th of the season.
UChicago ended with eight hits. Sarkon was 2-for-2 with one RBI, and first-year designated hitter Joseph Burns hit 2-for-3 with one steal.
- Saturday, April 14 @ 12:00 PM – Finlandia at UChicago (DH)