Photo by: Tony Leon/ActionWestPhotography.com
WHITTIER, Calif. – The Whittier College Baseball team saw their six-game winning streak come to an end Monday afternoon at Hugh B. Mendez Stadium in extra innings as they fell 6-4 to Middlebury.
The Purple & Gold sit at 14-5 at home this season and improve to 15-10, 4-8 SCIAC. The loss is Whittier's second on the season against a non-conference opponent.
Middlebury went on top in the fourth when Hayden Smith singled to left field, stole second and moved to third when Justin Han reached on a fielder's choice. The duo then pulled off a double steal, as Smith gave the Panthers a 1-0 lead.
The following inning, the Panthers scored three runs on four hits for a 4-0 advantage. Phil Bernstein got things going with a single to center, followed by a base hit to left from Drew Coash. Two batters later, Smith singled up the middle to drive in Bernstein and Henry Strmecki, who reached on a fielder's choice.
Whittier answered in the fifth on a two-run shot by freshman John Vuz (Blairstown, NJ), making it a 4-2 game. The Poets made it a one-run game in the sixth when Dmitri Washington (Peoria, AZ) singled to right center plating Jarryd Samsing (Buckeye, AZ), who led off with a base hit. Then in the eighth, the Poets answered again this time with Daniel Tuerffs (Yorba Linda, Calif.) driving in the game-tying run.
With the game all knotted up at 4-4, neither team scored in the ninth, forcing extras. Then in the 10th it was all Middlebury as Brooks Carroll put the Panthers on top for good with a solo shot to left. They tacked on another in the same inning for insurance but it wouldn't matter as Whittier was shut down in the bottom half of the frame seeing their winning streak end.
Dante Mancia (La Mirada, Calif.) suffered the loss for Whittier, giving up one run and three hits over 4.1 innings with four strikeouts. He drops to 0-2. Eleven players earned the Poets' 12 hits, with Brandon Mulrooney (Placentia, Calif.) going 2-2. Vuz finished 1-2 with a run scored and two RBI's and Mason Blansett (Lodi, Calif.) was 1-2 with a run scored.
Whittier remains in non-conference play this weekend, Friday-Saturday, March 30-31 when they welcome in George Fox University. They host a single game on Friday at 3:00pm before putting on a doubleheader on Saturday with game times set for 11:00am and 2:00pm.