Friday, March 30, 2001

Flyers get by West Virginia, pound Kent

The UD baseball team improved its winning streak to four games, beating West Virginia 4-2 on the road Tuesday and Kent State 12-5 at Stuart Field Wednesday.

The Flyers used timely hits against the Mountaineers, as they scored four runs off only six hits. The Mountaineers out-hit the Flyers 12-6, but junior starting pitcher Corey Allen spread the hits through eight innings, giving up only two runs in his final inning of work. He forced the Mountaineers to leave 11 runners on base.

Dayton got on the board first with a run in the third inning. Junior infielder Jeff Bourassa was able to score from second base courtesy of a West Virginia error.

In the next inning, Dayton dented the plate two more times because of West Virginia mistakes. The rally started when junior catcher Mark Wahl scored off a wild pitch. Senior infielder Clint Beasley then scored when senior infielder Nate Winklefoos singled to knock him in.

The Flyer lead grew to 4-0 in the top of the eighth inning, as senior outfielder Brooks Vogel singled in junior infielder Aaron Reesh to cap off the Flyers offense.

West Virginia knocked Allen out of the game in the bottom of the eighth, scoring two runs. Senior pitcher Scott Shean entered the game in the ninth inning to slam the door on any possible West Virginia rally and preserve the 4-2 win. Winklefoos and Vogel each contributed an RBI and a hit for the Flyers. Junior designated hitter Shawn Bolinger went 2-for-4.

Allen got his first win of the season for his efforts, striking out three. Shean, who allowed only one hit in the ninth, earned his first save.

It was the first win versus West Virginia in the series history.

“We’ve had some good wins this season,” head coach Tony Vittorio said.

Wednesday, the Flyers returned to Stuart Field and crushed the Golden Flashes 12-5 for their fourth consecutive victory.

Kent State sprinted to a 5-0 lead, scoring two runs in the second inning and three more in the third. After that point though, Dayton dominated offensively and defensively.

The Flyers answered the Golden Flashes’ three-run third inning by scoring four runs in the bottom half of the inning. Three errors, two coming in one play, resulted in Bourassa and Winkelfoos scoring the first two Flyer runs. A sacrifice fly by Bolinger and a groundout by Vogel scored two more to make the score 5-4.

Dayton broke the game open after that, scoring at least one run in every inning after being held scoreless for the first two. Vogel singled in Reesh in the fifth inning to put Dayton up 6-5.

They never looked back, belting 14 hits off four Kent State pitchers.

Junior pitcher Aaron Pahs came in to relieve junior starter Jake Hanson in the fourth inning and took over the game. In six innings of work, Pahs allowed only one Golden Flash hit, striking out two and earning his first win of the season.

“We consider Aaron a three-inning reliever,” Vittorio said. “He was impressive.”

Bolinger went 3-for-3 with two runs scored and an RBI. Bourassa went 3-for-4 and Vogel and Schulte each knocked in two runs. Wahl also had two hits for the Flyers.

The wins this week were the Flyers’ third and fourth straight. Overall, the Flyers’ record improves to 10-12, with a 2-1 record in Atlantic 10 conference play.

“We expected it,” Vittorio said. “We’ve played well lately.”

This weekend, Dayton travels to Richmond, Ind. to participate in the Richmond Tournament with Butler, Detroit-Mercy and Xavier. Their first opponent is Detroit-Mercy Friday.

By: Matt Hager

Tuesday, March 27, 2001

Flyers start A-10 season with two wins

Saturday, the UD baseball team started its Atlantic 10 season with a doubleheader split with the St. Bonaventure Bonnies at Stuart Field.

The Flyers took an early lead in game one when junior third baseman Aaron Reesh singled to drive in senior shortstop Nate Winkelfoos from second base.

Reesh’s single turned out to be one of only three Flyer hits in the game as St. Bonaventure’s Kyle Johnson shut down Dayton’s lumber.

The Bonnies scored in the fifth inning when Mike Tegeler beat out a bunt and advanced to second on a passed ball. He then scored on an error, tying the game.

In the sixth, St. Bonaventure took the lead when Tim Burris singled in Mark Evers for a 2-1 advantage. Burris later scored on one of four Flyer errors.

Junior pitcher Mike Rolih was given the loss despite giving up just one earned run on six hits in seven innings of work. He falls to 3-3 on the season. Senior center fielder Mark Schulte and senior left fielder Brooks Vogel had the only other hits for the Flyers.

The Flyers took the offensive humiliation of the first game to heart and pounded St. Bonaventure starter Kevin Niemczura for four runs in the first inning of the day’s second game and took advantage of a sloppy Bonnies’ defense.

The scoring started when Niemczura walked junior catcher Mark Wahl with the bases loaded. Senior right fielder Brent Berigan then singled in two more runs, and junior third baseman Corey Allen singled home Wahl to complete the first inning explosion.

Bonnies’ center fielder Mike Rapcioli knocked a solo home run in the third inning, but St. Bonaventure would get no closer.

In the bottom half of the third, Vogel doubled and scored on an RBI single from Berigan. Berigan then stole second and was driven in by senior first baseman Clint Beasley, earning his ninth RBI of the season.

Dayton added another run in the fourth as Reesh reached base with a single and moved to second on Vogel’s second hit of the game. After two consecutive St. Bonaventure errors, Reesh crossed home for the Flyers’ seventh and final run.

The Bonnies committed a season-high five errors, leading to five unearned runs.

Niemczura was given the loss, despite lasting just over two innings, and junior pitcher Mike Kerins picked up the win for the Flyers, going the distance and striking out seven while surrendering no walks.

Vogel, Berigan and Winkelfoos each went 2-for-3 in the game. Berigan had three RBIs.

By: Tim Shea

Friday, March 23, 2001

Flyers' bats start off hot, cool in...

While many people escaped the cold weather during Spring Break by heading south, the UD baseball team traveled west to face the Southern Colorado Thunderwolves and the Air Force Academy Falcons, splitting six games during the week.

The Flyers were scheduled to face the Thunderwolves Mar. 11 to begin the Spring Break road trip, but freezing temperatures caused the game to be postponed.

Dayton then traveled to Colorado Springs to take on Air Force Mar. 13-14. The weather remained cold, but the Dayton bats were hot, as they swept both games of the series, 21-6 and 9-8 respectively.

In the first game, it didn't take long for the Flyers to flex offensive muscle. Senior outfielder Mark Schulte led the game off with a solo homer. Four batters later, junior catcher Mark Wahl knocked Air Force starting pitcher Johnny Koegel out of the game by belting a grand slam.

“He (Wahl) has been a pleasant surprise,” coach Tony Vittorio said. “We knew he was a good catcher, but we didn’t know about his hitting.”

The Flyers kept up the offensive pressure in the next innings, as Wahl hit two more home runs. In the second inning, he crushed a three-run shot to add to the Flyers' lead. He hit his third homer of the game in the fourth inning, this time a two-run home run. Wahl also added a RBI single to put the Flyers ahead 20-2 after five innings.

The final UD run came off the bat of junior outfielder Shawn Bolinger, whose sixth-inning lead off home run capped his afternoon. Bolinger finished with three RBIs.

Dayton pounded the Air Force pitching staff for 21 hits.

Junior left-handed starter Jake Hanson earned his first win of the season, pitching six innings and only allowing two runs off two hits. Junior relievers Carl King, Aaron Pahs and Sam Fisher each pitched an inning to ice the win.

The next day, the two teams returned to Falcon Field. Weather would again play a factor, as the game only lasted six innings with the Flyers ending up on top, 9-8.

The Falcons came out hot early in the cold temperatures, tagging Flyer junior starting pitcher Mike Rolih for five runs in the bottom of the first inning.

The Flyers answered in the third inning, matching the Falcons' first inning output. Schulte remained hot, hitting a RBI triple off Falcon starter Mike Tufte. Junior infielder Mike Kerins and Bolinger added RBI hits, while junior infielder Aaron Reesh capped off the inning with a two-out single, scoring Bolinger and senior catcher Brooks Vogel.

Momentum remained on the Flyers' side, as they scored runs in the fourth and fifth innings. Kerins drove in his second run of the game in the fourth, and senior infielder Nate Winkelfoos, who scored on a wild pitch in the fourth, knocked in a run in the fifth.

Dayton held a 9-6 lead going into the bottom of the sixth inning. However, with light snow falling, Air Force pushed home their seventh run of the game.

The Falcons' rally continued as the snow started to fall harder. They scored another run on a single that advanced the tying run to third base.

Senior pitcher Kent Depue relieved Rolih after the single and put a stop to the Falcons' rally, getting Adam Howes to fly out to end the inning.

The umpires delayed the game after the inning because the field had become covered in snow. The game was called due to the poor weather conditions after a 10-minute wait.

The next day, Dayton returned to Pueblo to play Southern Colorado, and the weather again played a factor.

Winds gusting to 30 mph caused a rare wind delay before the teams’ Mar. 15 doubleheader. The delay did not help the Flyers any, as Thunderwolves pitcher Kevin Martin silenced the Flyers’ bats in the first game. Martin allowed only seven hits in a complete-game effort, which his team won 6-3.

Dayton scored the first two runs of the game in the second inning, but Southern Colorado responded with five of their own in the bottom half of the inning to take command of the game.

In the nightcap, Kerins, who played second base in the first game, pitched a complete game in the Flyers’ 4-2 win. Kerins allowed only two earned runs off four Thunderwolf hits.

The Flyers led the game 2-1 in the bottom of the sixth inning, before the Thunderwolves pushed a run across to tie the game. However, a bases-loaded wild pitch scored Winkelfoos and an insurance run scored when Bolinger hit a sacrifice fly to left field to score the Flyers’ fourth run of the game.

The two teams faced off the next day, Friday, in another doubleheader. Dayton did not end the trip with momentum, losing both games 5-4 and 10-4.

In the first game, the Flyers dented the plate four times in the first inning off Thunderwolves starter Mike Deulen. It was all he allowed through the game, holding the Flyers hitless after the second inning and retiring the side in order as well.

Dayton did keep the lead for most of the game, before two runs scored for Southern Colorado in the final two innings to blow the lead.

“We’ve lost a few games so far by one run,” Vittorio said. “It’s something we need to work on.”

The second game went no better for the Flyers, as the Thunderwolves scored in all but one inning en route to a 10-4 win.

Winkelfoos, Schulte, and Bolinger led the UD attack. Schulte went 3-for-4 for the game, including an RBI single. Winkelfoos went 2-for-4, with two runs scored—he stole home in the third. Bolinger went 2-for-4 with one RBI.

The teams were going to play again Sunday, but again weather cancelled the game.

Overall, the Flyers went 3-3 on their Spring Break trip to Colorado, going 2-0 over the Falcons but 1-3 against the Division II Thunderwolves. This brought the Flyers’ overall record to 5-10.

By: Matt Hager