Whitworth Sweeps UPS in NWC Doubleheader

Whitworth Sweeps UPS in NWC Doubleheader

SPOKANE, Wash. – Whitworth swept visiting Puget Sound in a Northwest Conference baseball doubleheader on Saturday, winning the opener 4-2 and rolling to a 12-3 win in the nightcap.

The Pirates improved to 7-6-1 overall and 2-0 in the NWC while ending a three-game losing streak.  The Loggers dropped to 7-8, 2-3 with their second and third straight losses.

Nick Motsinger went 6-8 at the plate in the two games for Whitworth and Jeremy Druffel slammed a game-turning grand slam in the nightcap.

Game 1 – Whitworth 4, Puget Sound 2
Dan Scheibe outdueled Matt Robinson in a match-up of First Team All-Northwest Conference starting pitchers.

Scheibe went 6.1 innings and allowed two runs (one earned) on 10 hits to get the win.  He improved to 2-0 this season, thanks in large part to the outstanding relief pitching of Jason Renner.  Renner slammed the door on the Loggers over the final 2.2 innings to earn his second save of the season.

UPS got on the board in the third inning when Nathan Brackes singled home Connor Savage, but a big inning was squandered when Kaulana Smith rounded too far past third base on the play and was thrown out.

Whitworth got two runs in the bottom of the third.  Gerhard Muelheims singled home Erik Nikssarian with the first run and Tyler Pfeffer doubled in Nick Motsinger with the second.

The Loggers tied the game in the sixth when Johnny Hosmer reached on an error at second base and Christian Carter scored with two outs.  But Whitworth picked up its own gift-run in the bottom of the sixth when Danny Jordan scored after a UPS throwing error.

Nikssarian singled home the final run of the game in the eighth.

Robinson (4-1) went 7.2 innings and allowed four runs on 10 hits, but none of the runs were earned thanks to four UPS errors.  He struck out eight and walked one while suffering his first loss of the season.

The key moment of the game came in the seventh inning with Whitworth ahead 3-2.  The Loggers had the bases loaded with only one out and Renner came in to relieve Scheibe.  Renner induced Backes to ground into a 1-2-3 double play to end the threat.

Motsinger finished 3-5 and Muelheims had two hits in four at-bats for Whitworht.  Savage, Cater and Backes all had two hits each for the Loggers.

Game 2 – Whitworth 12, Puget Sound 3
The Pirates trailed 3-1 in the bottom of the seventh when Druffel connected on his first career home run as a Pirate, a grand slam to left field, and Whitworth went on to the run-away victory.

Carson Blumenthal went the distance on the mound for Whitworth to improve to 3-0 this season.  He gave up three earned runs on 11 hits with four strikeouts and no walks.

Carter homered for UPS in the fourth, his second of the season, to give UPS a 1-0 lead.  Whitworth tied it in the fifth when Mostsinger's sacrifice fly scored Thomas Wakem.  Wakem led off the inning with a triple to center field.

Hosmer's two-run single in the sixth gave the Loggers and 3-1 lead and it looked like it might hold up thanks to the strong pitching of starter Jarrod Beiser.  Beiser went six innings and allowed one run on seven hits, but would not factor in the decision.

Jeff Walton relieved Beiser in the seventh and a walk followed by two singles loaded the bases for Druffel.  Druffel's ball carried over the left field wall for a 5-3 Whitworth lead.

The Pirates broke the game open with seven unearned runs against Walton in the eighth, thanks to a pair of errors early in the inning.  Motsinger had a two-run double and Justin Liu added a two-run single in the frame.

Motsinger finished 3-3 with three RBIs and two runs scored.  Druffel went 4-5 with four RBIs, while Wakem finished 3-4 with three runs.

Carter went 4-5 for UPS with two runs scored and an RBI.

The Pirates and Loggers will finish the series on Sunday with a single game at noon.