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May 12, 2006

Wolverines fall into loser's bracket

WASHINGTON, Pa. -- The Grove City College baseball team fell into the loser's bracket of the 2006 Presidents' Athletic Conference Championship Tournament Friday afternoon with a 10-2 loss to fourth-seeded Thomas More in the winner's bracket final at Ross Memorial Park.

Grove City (26-12) will now play top-seeded Washington and Jefferson in a loser's bracket game at 2 p.m. at Ross Memorial Park.

Thomas More broke Friday's game open with a six-run eighth inning. The Saints strung seven hits together during the inning, sealing the win. The Saints will play the winner of the Grove City-Washington and Jefferson game in the championship round.

Grove City fell behind 1-0 in the bottom of the first but the Wolverines quickly tied the game in the second as sophomore catcher Ray Mertz (Glenshaw, Pa./Shaler) singled and scored on a double from junior first baseman Dan Bartkowiak (Fredonia, N.Y./Fredonia).

Thomas More took a 4-1 lead into the sixth before the Wolverines tried to rally. Senior shortstop Mike Ritter (Moon Township, Pa./Moon) singled and eventually scored on a one-out double from freshman DH Brad Stombaugh (Pittsburgh, Pa./Mount Lebanon). Grove City had Mertz on third and Stombaugh on second with one out but stranded both runners.

Sophomore center fielder Jon Coyne (Solon, Ohio/Solon) doubled and singled for the Wolverines, who had just seven hits. Senior pitcher Ryan Carr (New Castle, Pa./Mohawk) took the loss for Grove City, allowing 10 runs in 7 2/3 innings. Freshman Matt Tindall (Copley, Ohio/Copley) pitched 1/3 inning of relief.

Grove City is aiming for its first PAC title since 2002.

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