MOUNT VERNON, Iowa – It took 12 innings, but the University of Chicago baseball team found a will to win in a Sunday thriller to defeat host Cornell College, 12-7, in a series-clinching victory in Midwest Conference cross-divisional play.
The Maroons (9-4) scored five runs in the top of the 12th to take the three-game series 2-1, after winning Game 2 on Saturday, 4-1. The Rams (10-11) won Saturday's opener, 9-3.
In total, the Maroons tallied 18 hits to Cornell's 16, with Brian Lyle (3-for-7), Brady Sarkon (2-for-6, double) adding multi-hit games and Ian Bohn (double), Benjamin Rosengard (single), Payton Jancsy (single) had two RBI each.
The Maroons' offense opened the game hot, as UChicago's first three batters – Jancsy, Lyle and Bohn ripped three-straight hits in the top of the first. Bohn's double scored two of the inning's five runs, as Josh Parks (single), Weekley (single) and Jancsy (walk) added RBIs to give Maroons' starter Joe Liberman an early 5-0 cushion.
UChicago would add another run in the third when Weekley doubled and later scored on a Jancsy groundout before the host Rams would get on the board. Cornell responded with two runs in the bottom of the frame and UChicago up, 6-2, after three. Zach Stone's solo home run in the fourth trimmed that lead the three before UChicago's Rosengard added another run with an RBI single in the top of the sixth.
The Rams weren't finished though, capitalizing on a Maroon miscue with a Keenan Bryant home run that helped Cornell plate four in the bottom of the sixth and tie the game at 7-all.
UChicago relievers Jacob Petersen (3.1 innings, three hits, three strikeouts) and David Clarke (2.2 innings, three hits, two strikeouts) helped the Maroons keep the Rams off the board for the next six innings, with Clarke later credited with the win.
Two straight singles from the Rams to open the 11th threatened to break that streak, but Clarke forced the next Cornell batter to ground into a 6-4-3 double play to clean the bases. That set up UChicago's five-run burst in the 12th. Lyle singled but two others got out for the Maroons, but Sarkon kept his team alive with a single to push Lyle to third.
Cornell's pitching change didn't stop the surge, as the next Maroon, sophomore Joseph Burns, was hit by a pitch to load the bases. That set up the go-ahead RBI: a walk by Rosengard. With the bases still loaded and still two outs, UChicago would keep swinging with back-to-back two RBI singles from Kelly and Weekely to complete the scoring.
Clarke allowed a double in the bottom of the 12th but forced the final Ram to line out to end the game.
- Wednesday, April 10: Rose-Hulman at UChicago, 3P CT