Concordia’s Busy Week Opens Second Half Of GNAC Play
Mitch Bevacqua hit a walkoff home run for Concordia as the Cavaliers split their four-game series with Saint Martin's.
Mitch Bevacqua hit a walkoff home run for Concordia as the Cavaliers split their four-game series with Saint Martin's.

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

PORTLAND, Ore. -- Concordia will play six games in five days, beginning with a make-up game on Wednesday against Western Oregon to begin the second half of the conference season.

The Cavaliers will then finish their game against Central Washington that was halted in the bottom of the third inning on Friday. The game will be played at Concordia’s Porter Park, but Central Washington will still be the home team for that game. Then the Wildcats will be the visitor for Saturday and Sunday’s doubleheaders against Concordia.

Northwest Nazarene was the only team that has played all 20 games of the first half of the conference season and will look to build on its conference-best 12 GNAC wins with a four-game series against Montana State Billings.

After its make-up game with Concordia, Western Oregon will host Saint Martin’s in the Wolves’ first home series of the season. Western Oregon split its four-game series with Northwest Nazarene last week to maintain a 1.5-game lead in the GNAC standings going into the second half of the season.

Central Washington was the only GNAC team to win three games last week, winning all but one of a four-game series with Montana State Billings to reach a GNAC-best 14 overall wins. The Wildcats were led by Jake Levin both at the plate and on the mound. The senior threw a 3-run complete game for the win in the first game, while hitting three home runs with eight hits and eight RBIs. Levin’s ERA is now 1.73 which continues to lead the GNAC by a large margin. Meanwhile, his .360 batting average ranks second.


Jay Leverett, Western Oregon
IF • 5-9 • Jr. • Gold Bar, Wash.

Leverett batted went 7 for 10 in the Wolves’ four-game series with Northwest Nazarene and reached base 15 times in 18 plate appearances. Leverett collected two doubles two solo home runs and four RBIs. He also scored a GNAC-best eight runs, was walked four times and hit by pitch four times. He went 2 for 3 in both of WOU’s victories on Saturday and scored a game-tying run in the Wolves’ eventual 9-7 win in 10 innings.

Also Nominated: Alec Hagerman (Saint Martin’s), Tanner Watson (Montana State Billings), Mitch Bevacqua (Concordia), Spencer Pollock (NW Nazarene).

Jake Levin, Central Washington
RHP • 6-5 • Sr. • Redmond, Wash.

Levin threw a complete game in Central Washington’s 12-3 win in Friday’s series opener against Montana State Billings on Friday. He recorded seven strikeouts, while allowing three runs, two earned, on five hits with three walks. Levin helped his own cause with three hits in the contest a double, a grand slam, three runs and five RBIs.

Also Nominated: Luke Hare (Saint Martin’s), Brady Miller (Western Oregon), Bryon Barker (Montana State Billings), Jaramy Jacobs (Northwest Nazarene), Scott Schepige (Concordia).


• The Wildcats were the only team to do bettern than split in GNAC play last week, taking three of four games against Montana State Billings to remain the GNAC leader in overall wins with a 14-11 record.
• Jake Levin threw his first complete game of the season to earn the win in the series opener against Montana State Billings with seven strikeouts and three runs allowed, two earned, on five hits and three walks. Levin also got it done at the plate, going 8 for 14 with a grand slam and walkoff solo home run among his three home runs.
• Levin now leads the conference in ERA (1.73) and ranks second in batting average (.360). He has thrown a GNAC-best 52 innings and struck out 34 batters.
• Mackenzie Gaul leads the league in strikeouts this year with 47 in exactly 47 innings of work.
• Central Washington leads the GNAC individually in every major category in both pitching and hitting. Dylan Freyre leads the league in batting average by a large margin at .441. Runs batted in and home runs are the only categories that the Wildcats don’t lead individually, but they rank third in both of those categories as a team.
• Connor Plaisance and Freyre each have nine doubles this year, which is tied for second best in the GNAC this season.The two have a combined 120 total bases.
• Central Washington will play five games at Concordia this week.

• Concordia earned a split at home against Saint Martin’s last week, winning the final game of the series 5-3 behind an excelent pitching performance by Scot Schepige.
• Schepige faced 21 consecutive batters without allowing a hit before Saint Martin’s tacked on three runs in the final frame of the game.
• James Brooks claimed the Cavaliers first win of the series by retiring three batters in a row in the top of the seventh inning before Mitch Bevacqua hit a walkoff solo home run. Brooks is now 2-2 with three saves in 10 appearances and a 3.49 ERA, which ranks fifth in the GNAC.
• Bevacqua’s home run was his second of the season. The Cavaliers have hit just eight home runs this year and play in one of the largest ballparks in college baseball.
• The Cavaliers’ offense snapped out of a slump in the series against Saint Martin’s, scoring at least five runs in all four games after failing to score at least five runs in the previous six games.
• Cole Crosby leads the team in batting average at .321 with three triples, which is tied for the most in the GNAC.
• Concordia will play six games at Porter Park in five games this week. The Cavaliers begin the series of games on Wednesday, hosting a make-up game against Western Oregon. On Friday, Concordia will complete a halted game before playing a pair of doubleheaders on Saturday and Sunday.

• Montana State Billings won one of four games at Central Washington over the weekend, remaining in fourth place in the GNAC standings after the first half of the season.
• The Yellowjackets exploded for 14 runs in the third game of the series for their lone victory. Jalen Garcia, Tanner Watson and Conner Linebarger each had three hits in the win.
• Matt Dillon didn’t have any of the Yellowjackets’ 16 hits in the victory, but still recorded a team-best three RBIs and scored a run.
• Bryon Baker earned his fourth victory with 7.1 innings of work and just two runs allowed. Baker now ranks third in the conference in ERA at 2.62 and has 30 strikeouts in 34.1 innings pitched.
• Watson went 4 for 10 in the series at Central Washington, hitting his second home run of the season and driving in a pair of runs. Watson tied a school single-game record by scoring four runs in the third game of the series. He also recorded a start on the mound, pitching 4.1 strong innings allowing two earned runs on five hits with a strikeout and a walk. Watson now leads the ‘Jackets in ERA at 1.35 this season.
• Merritt has a .311 batting average, which leads the Yellowjackets, and he has recorded three triples, tied for the most in the GNAC.
• Montana State Billings’ 165 runs this season ranks second in the conference as the Yellowjackets continue to find ways to score despite ranking fourth in batting average at .264 in 29 games this year.
• The Yellowjackets will play at Northwest Nazarene this week with doubleheaders on Friday and Saturday. It is the second series between the two schools in the span of three weeks. Montana State Billings won the first two games before dropping the last two of the first series played in Billings.

• Northwest Nazarene’s offense continued its hot hitting streak in a 13-10 victory in the opener against Western Oregon, before the Wolves’ pitching cooled their bats. The Crusaders had scored 96 runs in a span of nine games.
• The Crusaders lead the league as a team in both runs (193) and batting average (.281) with a lot of help from a pair of seniors in the lineup.
• Billy King has a GNAC-best 11 home runs, 71 total bases and .732 slugging percentage. King has also been successful in all six stolen base attempts.
• Colten McCluskey is among the GNAC leaders in batting average, hitting .364 this season, including six extra-base hits. He has driven in 11 runs and scored 15 times himself.
• Spencer Pollock paced the Crusader offense in the series with a 5-for-12 effort at the plate with two solo home runs. Pollock also drew a walk and was hit by a pitch.
• Jaramy Jacobs earned a 4-3 win, going 6.2 innings against Western Oregon on Friday. Jacobs scattered seven hits and allowed just three earned runs, while striking out 6 in the victory.
• Brady Baker threw 3.2 innings in the series finale as the Crusaders used a committee to pitch through the game. Baker allowed three earned runs, bringing his ERA this season up to 3.55, which continues to be the best on the squad.
• After winning the final two games of its series at Montana State Billings two weeks ago, Northwest Nazarene will now host the Yellowjackets for another four-game series that begins on Friday.

• The Saints won two games on the road last week at Concordia to move to 1.5 games within fourth place, which is the cutoff for participation in the 2017 GNAC Championships.
• Luke Hare threw 4.2 innings in two relief appearances with just one hit allowed and recorded a save in both outtings. This season, Hare has a 0.95 ERA with three saves on 19 innings pitching in 10 relief appearances.
• Mickey Walker threw five innings with four strikeouts in the opener to earn the win with just three runs allowed. Walker has now thrown 31 strikeouts in just 27 innings of work. He is the only player in the GNAC averaging double-digit strikeouts per nine innings.
• The Saints have been led offensively by Steven Sordahl with a .333 batting average and a .394 on-base percentage in the two-hole. He has come around to score 11 times after reaching base 39 times.
• Aaron Shoup took the loss in the first game, throwing 7.1 innings with seven runs allowed, four earned, on 11 hits and two walks. He struck out six batters as he picked up his third loss of the season.
• Steven Sordahl continues to lead the SMU offense with a .338 batting average in 19 games played. He has hit five doubles and driven in 10 runs.
• Saint Martin’s will travel to Western Oregon this week for a four-game series against the top team in the GNAC standings. The series will be two doubleheaders on Saturday and Sunday. The two teams have already played one doubleheader, where the Saints earned a split.

• The Wolves snapped their three-game losing streak with two big games offensively to return to the top spot in the GNAC standings at the end of the first half of the season.
• Western Oregon scored 11 runs in the second inning of the third game of the series. Boog Leach started the inning with a walk and was hit by a pitch, coming around to score both times. Leach finished the game reaching base in all six plate appearances with four singles.
• Leverett was named GNAC Player of the Week after he reached base in 15 of 18 plate appearances with four walks, four hit by pitch, three singles, two doubles and two home runs. He also recorded a GNAC-best eight runs on the week.
• Brady Miller threw six shutout innings to earn his third win of the season. He brought his ERA this year down to 3.72, which is one-hundredth above the team ERA.
• Kade Mechals threw 2.2 shutout innings in the series finale to earn his second win of the season. The freshman has a 1.26 ERA in 14.1 innings and eight relief appearances this year.
• Brock Pradere had his strikeoutless streak snapped at 69 consecutive plate appearances dating back to last year without a strikeout. Pradere was struck out twice in a row. His new streak is now at 11 plate appearances.
• Leach has only played in six game, but has a .500 batting average with seven singles and four RBIs.
• Western Oregon will travel to Concordia for a make-up game on Wednesday before returning home for a Saturday-Sunday four-game series against Saint Martin’s. The Wolves won the first meeting with Saints this season before dropping a 2-1 decision in the nightcap.