Raiders Deal Bulldogs 8-3 Set-Back In League Tournament
Lorain, Ohio - A late offensive surge by third-seeded Wright State would be too much for No. 7 seed Butler to handle, as the Bulldogs fell in the second round of the U.S. Army Horizon League Baseball Championship to the Raiders, 8-3, on Wednesday (May 20) afternoon at The Pipe Yard.
The defeat sends Butler into the consolation bracket, where it will face No. 4 seed Valparaiso on Thursday (May 21) starting at 11:00 a.m.
The Bulldogs struck first in the game, as Colin Ziegel ripped a one-out solo home run to left center - his fourth of the season - in the second inning for a 1-0 lead.
Wright State would respond, tying the game up in the third on an RBI triple before tacking on the go-ahead mark in the fourth on a single back up the middle.
Butler countered in the sixth to bring the game even once more. Michael Letzter roped a double to left center to bring Ziegel to the plate, and the senior outfielder delivered again with an RBI single to center.
Meanwhile, starting pitcher Mike Hernandez pitched brilliantly through the first five innings, allowing just the two runs through the first five innings after setting down the first eight batters he faced in the game.
The Raiders would get to the freshman righty in the bottom of the sixth, scoring twice on three hits to take a 4-2 advantage, before tallying three more in the seventh to go up by five at 7-2.
Butler earned a run back in the eighth after Rick Betsch led off with a single, moved to third on a single by Grant Fillipitch and sprinted home after Letzter beat out a potential inning-ending double-play.
The Bulldogs continued to threaten late, loading the bases with one down in the ninth, but the Raiders managed to escape unscathed to hold on for the win.
Ziegel went 3-for-4 at the plate with a run scored and a pair of RBI, while Betsch, Fillipitch and Alex Montagano each added two hits.