Tuesday, April 18, 2017
PORTLAND, Ore. -- Bats came alive around the GNAC over the weekend as seven teams scored double-digit runs during the 12 games. The most notable performances came from Saint Martin’s and Montana State Billings, each crushing the previous GNAC season high of 15 runs by scoring 18 runs each.
Western Oregon was the ultimate winner last week, however, taking four of five games against MSU Billings to increase its lead in the GNAC standings to three games.
On Saturday, all three doubleheaders ended in splits, meaning each of the six GNAC teams earned a victory on the day. All four spots at the GNAC Championships are available with three weeks left in the season. Montana State Billings holds a two-game lead on Saint Martin’s for the fourth spot.
Western Oregon will play seven games this week after its five-game series last week. The Wolves will travel to Saint Martin’s on Tuesday for a doubleheader before hosting Corban on Wednesday. Then the Wolves will host a four-game series over the weekend against Concordia.
After hosting the Wolves, Saint Martin’s will travel to Montana State Billings for a four-game series beginning on Friday. Simultaneously, Northwest Nazarene will be at Central Washington in a battle featuring the two teams tied for second place in the GNAC standings. Northwest Nazarene won three of four games in its first series with Central Washington, but the Wildcats have gone 14-7 since then to earn a GNAC-best 23 wins so far this season.
Chris Dalto, Central Washington
SS • 5-10 • Jr. • Valencia, Calif.
Dalto had a big week offensively for Central Washington, going 11 for 16 with two doubles, a home run, eight runs and six RBIs in a four-game split with Saint Martin’s. He went 3 for 4 with two runs and two RBIs in Friday’s opener and 3 for 3 with two runs and two RBIs in the nightcap, a 12-3 win. Dalto then had three hits, three runs and two RBIs in Saturday’s opener before finishing with two hits in the nightcap.
Also Nominated: Zach Robinson (MSU Billings), Austin Feist (Saint Martin’s), Torreahno Sweet (Western Oregon), Andrew Helmstadter (Northwest Nazarene).
Cody Cooper, Montana State Billings
RHP • 6-4 • Sr. • Bozeman, Mont.
Cooper earned his second consecutive selection with his second nine-inning complete game of the season in an 18-2 victory over Western Oregon on Saturday. He allowed just one earned run on seven hits with a walk and six strikeouts. Cooper threw 134 pitches in the game and produced 13 groundouts.
Also Nominated: JJ Asinas (Central Washington), Scott Schepige (Concordia), Bryan Black (NW Nazarene), Benjamin Wadowski (Saint Martin’s), Trey Smith (Western Oregon)
AROUND THE GNAC
• Central Washington earned a split with Saint Martin’s in a high-scoring series. The two teams scoring a combined 80 runs in the four games.
• Shortstop Chris Dalto was named the GNAC Player of the Week after going 11 for 16 with a pair of doubles and a home run in the split. Dalto also picked up his fifth save of the season in Saturday’s opener, throwing a scoreless ninth inning to wrap up a 14-13 victory for the Wildcats.
• Jake Levin went 6 for 10 with five runs scored in Friday’s doubleheader. He also pitched the first game of the series in which the Saints scored a conference-best 18 runs. Levin picked up his third loss of the season and saw his once GNAC-leading ERA grow to 2.98 in 60.1 innings this season.
• Mackenzie Gaul successfully slowed down the Saints’ bats, holding them to one run in four innings of work in Friday’s nightcap for his fifth win of the season. Gaul now leads the Wildcats in ERA at 2.89 and ranks second in the conference in strikeouts at 53 in 56 innings pitched.
• Dylan Freyre leads the league in batting average (.381) and hits (51). He also has 74 total bases, which is tied for the second most in the GNAC. Conor Plaisance has 18 extra-base hits and a GNAC-leading 13 doubles for the Wildcats.
• Central Washington will play against Northwest Nazarene this week. The two teams are tied for second place in the GNAC standings, but Northwest Nazarene won three of four games in their series in Nampa.
• Concordia snapped a seven-game losing streak with a 6-5 win in the series finale against Northwest Nazarene on Saturday. The Cavaliers have now won a quarter of their conference games with a 7-21 record.
• James Brooks threw five innings in relief and put four scoreless innings to pick up his third win of the season. Brooks has made 14 appearances this season and has a 3-5 record with a 4.91 ERA in 36.2 innings pitched.
• Concordia scored one run in the top of the eighth for the extra-inning victory. Ben Koerner reached on a single and advanced to third base on a throwing error. Tanner Williams drove in the game-winning run with a fielder’s choice.
• Gerhett Moser took a no-decision despite throwing nine innings with only one run allowed. Moser didn’t get the run support he needed, sending the game into extra innings, where Northwest Nazarene got a walkoff solo home run.
• Moser has made four starts this year and has taken a no-decision in each start. He has a 3.38 ERA with six innings pitched per outing. He has also struckout eight batters and only allowed two extra-base hits.
• Cole Crosby hit his sixth double of the season in the series to reach 10 extra-base hits, the first player on the team to reach double digits.
• Concordia will play at Western Oregon this weekend in a four-game series beginning on Saturday. The Wolves swept the series when the two teams met earlier this season.
MONTANA STATE BILLINGS
• Montana State Billings took just one game in the five-game series against Western Oregon, but took that win by a big margin, winning 18-2.
• The Yellowjackets scored 18 runs on a team-high 19 hits, tying the GNAC season high for runs scored that was set the day before by Saint Martin’s. In the originally-scheduled four-game series, MSUB outscored the Wolves 35-32.
• GNAC Pitcher of the Week Cody Cooper threw a two-run complete game to earn the win in the 18-2 victory. He struck out six batters with one earned run allowed on seven hits and one walk. He brought his season ERA down to 5.63 and improved his record to 2-5.
• Tanner Watson went 3 for 5 with five RBIs and two runs scored. He hit his third home run of the season and finished a triple away from the cycle. Ryan Myers hit his eighth home run of the season, going 3 for 4 with two RBIs and three runs. Myers now ranks third in the conference in home runs.
• Zach Robinson was aggressive on the basepaths, stealing four bases in the second game of the series, tying the GNAC single-game record. He also belted his second home run of the season to help the Yellowjackets take a 6-2 lead into the sixth inning.
• Bryon Baker’s start lasted just six batters, recording only one out before his outing came to a close. He was charged with two earned runs, but still leads the team in ERA at 4.17 in 45.1 innings pitched.
• The Yellowjackets will host a four-game series against Saint Martin’s. Montana State Billings holds a one-game lead over the Saints going into the series. With where the standings are currently at, Saint Martin’s and Montana State Billings are battling for the fourth and final spot in the GNAC Championships. The Yellowjackets won three of four games when the two teams met in Lacey. The Saints have gone 6-10 since that series.
• Northwest Nazarene won three of four games against Concordia and only allowed four runs in the three wins to move into a tie for second place in the GNAC standings.
• Ross Clevenger tossed a one-run complete game with seven strikeouts for his fourth win this season. He now has a team-best 4.21 ERA and has thrown 62 innings with two complete games.
• Jaramy Jacobs took the ball in the second game of the series and didn’t allow an earned run in six innings of work with nine strikeouts to improve to 4-3 on the season.
• In Saturday’s opener, Adam Paulson took a no decision after throwing seven innings of one-run baseball. Brady Baker then threw three shutout innings before Andrew Helmstadter hit a walkoff solo home run in the bottom of the tenth for a 2-1 victory.
• Billy King hit two doubles in the series to reach 22 extra-base hits this year. He now has a GNAC-best 86 total bases and .683 slugging percentage. He ranks 33rd in the nation in home runs with 11.
• Casey Sheehan now leads the team in batting average at .331 with nine doubles, a triple and six home runs. Sheehan has 74 total bases, which is tied for the second most in the GNAC behind King.
• The Crusaders will travel to Central Washington for a four-game series that will begin on Friday. The two teams are currently tied for second place in the GNAC and the Crusaders currently hold a 3-1 advantage in the season series.
• The Saints won the series opener and series finale in a split with Central Washington to move to within a game of fourth place Montana State Billings.
• The Saints scored a GNAC season-high 18 runs on a season-high 23 hits in the series opener. The Saints’ first five positions in the batting order each had at least three hits, including Adam Eskil’s 5-for-6 effort with six RBIs.
• The Saints hit 20 singles and three doubles with just four walks to produce the 18 runs. Austin Feist hit two of the three doubles and finished the game 4 for 5 with five RBIs and three runs.
• Ryan Dorney had been getting little run support in his outings this season up until the 18-run outburst. Dorney allowed five runs, four earned, on eight hits to pick up his first win of the season.
• Feist hit a three-run home run in the series finale and scored two runs to lead the Saints to an 8-1 victory. Feist also singled and scored in part of a four-run first inning.
• Benjamin Wadowski scattered seven hits in six innings, allowing just one run with three strikeouts for his second win in as many starts. Wadowski now has a 3.66 ERA with 13 strikeouts in 19.2 innings pitched.
• The Saints took their seventh one-run loss of the season in Saturday’s opener, falling 14-13 despite Brandon Witherspoon and Steven Sordahl going a combined 7 for 10 at the top of the lineup.
• Saint Martin’s will travel to Montana State Billings, trailing the Yellowjackets by a game for fourth place in the GNAC standings. The top four teams in the conference will advance to the GNAC Championships in May.
• The Wolves pushed their season-long winning streak to eight games before Montana State Billings snapped it with an 18-2 win. Western Oregon quickly bounced back with an 8-3 win to wrap up the series.
• Western Oregon now has a three-game lead in the GNAC standings over Central Washington and Northwest Nazarene, which are tied for second place.
• The Wolves have their first chance to clinch a spot in the GNAC Championships this week. They can do so by winning all four games and either Saint Martin’s gets swept or Montana State Billings loses three games.
• Senior Trey Smith became the GNAC leader in ERA after throwing six shutout innings against Montana State Billings before tossing a 3-run complete game in the series finale for his second and third wins of the season. Smith now has a 2.70 ERA with a 3-1 record and two complete games.
• Freshman Connor McCord threw six innings of one-run baseball in the opening game of the doubleheader with SMU. He struck out four batters and left the game with a no decision. His 2.81 ERA this season now ranks second in the conference.
• Brock Pradere didn’t strikeout once this week, moving up to No. 4 in the nation in toughest to strikeout. He has struck out just three times this season in exactly 100 plate appearances. Pradere now leads the team in batting average at .346 and on-base percentage at .448.
• Western Oregon’s make-up doubleheader with Saint Martin’s was postponed again, meaning the Wolves will start their week on Wednesday with a single game against Corban. The Wolves will then host Concordia in a four-game series beginning on Saturday. The Wolves swept Concordia in their first meeting.