From CWU Athletics
ELLENSBURG, Wash. (Mar. 5) -- Seniors Kyle Sani (Kennewick, Wash./Southridge HS) and Justin Peterson (Tacoma, Wash./Life Christian Academy) had three hits apiece as part of a 15-hit attack, helping the Central Washington University baseball team to a 7-2 non-conference victory over visiting Whitworth University on Tuesday afternoon.
The Wildcats improved to 8-9 overall with their fourth win in the past five games. Whitworth, which competes as a member of the NCAA Division III, fell to 5-6-1 on the season.
Sani went 3 for 5 with a double, home run, and three runs batted in, while Peterson was 3 for 4.
CWU fell behind 1-0 after the first inning, when Whitworth strung together three straight two-out hits for the game's first run. The Wildcats tied the game in the second on a two-out bloop single by Peterson that scored sophomore Kasey Bielec (Port Orchard, Wash./North Mason HS). A two-run third inning, powered by Sani's fifth home run of the season over the batting cages behind the left-field fence, gave CWU the lead and enabled redshirt sophomore Davis Engel (Ellensburg, Wash.) to earn his first win of the season (1-1).
Senior Marc Garza (Othello, Wash.) homered on the second pitch of the bottom of the fifth inning to extend the lead to 4-1.
Whitworth trimmed the lead to 4-2 in the top of the sixth as Josh Davis, who finished 3 for 4 in the game, drove home Gerhard Muelheims with a RBI single. The Wildcats then responded with two insurance runs in the bottom of the inning, as junior Ethan Sterkel (Ellensburg, Wash.) drove home a run with a bases-loaded sacrifice fly and Sani followed with a RBI single to left field.
Consecutive doubles by Sani and Bielec with one out in the eighth inning accounted for the game's final run.
CWU finished the game with a 15-11 edge in hits, with all nine places in the batting order producing at least one hit. In addition to the three-hit outings by Sani and Peterson, Garza (2 for 4) and Bielec (2 for 3) finished with multi-hit contests.
A total of six pitchers combined on the victory for the Wildcats, with Engel and junior Jeff Gonzales (Bellevue, Wash./Newport HS) pitching three innings each and four others combining to throw the final three frames. The CWU pitching staff combined to strike out eight and did not walk a batter.
Whitworth's 11 hits came from a combined five players, led by Davis with three. Muelheims, Jeremy Druffel, Tyler Pfeffer, and Danny Jordan all had two hits each.
CWU will have this coming weekend off from games, returning to Great Northwest Athletic Conference action with a four-game home series against Saint Martin's University on Mar. 16-17.