CLAREMONT, Calif. – Whitworth rallied for three runs in the ninth inning of Sunday's second game to complete a sweep of the non-conference baseball series at Pomona-Pitzer.
The Pirates won the opener 10-6 and then won the nightcap 7-6 after the ninth inning rally. With the three game sweep Whitworth improved to 5-1. The Sagehens dropped to 4-6 after losing three games at home to the Bucs.
Matthew Nelson homered twice and drove in five runs, while Liam Fitzpatrick homered and drove in four runs to lead Whitworth's offense on Sunday. The Pirates overcame a three-homer day by Pomona-Pitzer's Tanner Nishioka.
Whitworth will complete the trip to California with a single game at Redlands on Monday.
Game 1 – Whitworth 10, Pomona-Pitzer 6
The Pirates jumped out to an early 5-0 lead and then held off the Sagehens by scoring a pair of runs in the ninth inning of Sunday's opener.
Whitworth scored three runs in the first inning thanks to an RBI double by Joel Condreay, followed by a two-run homer off of the bat of Liam Fitzpatrick. The Pirates added single runs in the second and third. Fitzpatrick's sacrifice fly scored Condreay in the third.
Nishioka single-handedly cut the margin to 5-3 in the bottom of the third with a three-run home run.
But Nelson answered with a three-run home run of his own in the top of the fifth to extend Whitworth's lead back to 8-3.
Pomona-Pitzer rallied for three runs in the bottom of the sixth to close the gap once again. Nolan McCafferty and Peter Troupe had RBI singles.
The Pirates put the game away with a pair of runs in the ninth, thanks to an RBI single by Jordan McGowan and a run-scoring double from Nelson.
Ryan Kingma improved to 2-0 after going the first five innings on the hill for Whitworth and allowing three runs on five hits. Darren Crosby allowed three runs (one earned) in three innings of relief. Kelly Fitzpatrick tossed a perfect ninth with two strikeouts to close out the game.
Sagehen starter Nicholas Radich fell to 1-2 after allowing eight runs (seven earned) on five hits and three walks in 5.0 innings.
Game 2 – Whitworth 7, Pomona-Pitzer 6
Liam Fitzpatrick, Nicholas Nerud and Daniel Casenova all had RBIs during the Pirates' game-winning, three-run rally in the ninth inning of Sunday's finale. Ryan Bird went 3-5 at the plate.
Nishioka hit his second home run of the day in the bottom of the first to give the Sagehens a 2-0 lead.
Whitworth grabbed a 3-2 lead in the fourth when Bird singled in a run and Nate Lamberty followed with a two-run double. Nelson's second homer of the day increased the margin to 4-2 in the top of the fith.
The Sagehens went back in front 5-4 in the bottom of the seventh. After a run scored on a wild pitch, Nishioka struck again with a two-run shot to give PP the lead. Nishioka's third homer of the day was his fourth of the series and eighth of the season in only ten games.
Cade Hulse added a solo shot in the bottom of the seventh to increase the Sagehens' lead to 6-4.
Bird opened the game-winning rally in the ninth inning with an infield single and Jacob Yamane drew a walk. JT Phelen's sacrifice moved the runners to second and third with one out. Fitzpatrick, pinch-hitting for Lamberty, reached on a throwing error at third base, which drove in the first run. Nerud followed with an RBI single to third that drove in Yamane. Casanova's ground out with one out scored Fitzpatrick.
Taylor Hillmick threw the final five outs for Whitworth and picked up the win after allowing only one run. Matthew Young started for the Bucs and allowed two runs on four hits in six innings. Arory Milyard threw 1.1 innings in relief of Young and gave up four runs (two earned) on four hits.
Jeremy Jess started for Pomona-Pitzer and allowed four runs on seven hits in 5.1 innings. Casey Hershfield, the Sagehens' fourth pitcher of the game, took the loss after he gave up three unearned runs on two hits and a walk in the ninth.