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May 8, 2009

Wolverines stun Thomas More; fall to W&J

WASHINGTON, Pa. -- The Grove City College baseball team had its season come to an end Friday night in the loser's bracket final of the 2009 Presidents' Athletic Conference Championship Tournament at Ross Memorial Park with an 18-7 loss to top-seeded Washington & Jefferson.

Earlier Friday, the Wolverines stayed alive in the tournament by rallying for a 10-9 win over Thomas More in an elimination game. Junior DH Tyler Thompson (Lee, Maine/Lee Academy) belted a three-run homer to right field in the bottom of the ninth inning to give Grove City the win.

In Friday's first game, Grove City jumped out to a 6-1 lead in the second inning by scoring three runs in each of its first two at-bats. Sophomore right fielder Scott Moran (Columbia, Md./Chapelgate Christian) cracked a two-run homer in the bottom of the second to cap the outburst.

Thomas More eventually tied the game 6-6 in the seventh. The Saints then took advantage of three Grove City errors in the top of the eight to take a 9-6 lead. Grove City trimmed the lead to 9-7 in the eighth as sophomore second baseman Andrew Patterson (Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio/Cuyahoga Valley Christian) singled in sophomore left fielder Butch Kriger (Pittsburgh, Pa./Montour).

Eventual winning pitcher Matt Tindall (Copley, Ohio/Copley) worked out of a jam in the top of the ninth to keep Grove City within two. Moran reached on an error while senior shortstop Ben Wilson (Mechanicsville, Va./Lee-Davis) was hit by a pitch. Following a force play, Thompson hit his fourth home run of the season.

Kriger and Patterson both went 2 for 4 while Moran and senior center fielder Seth Thompson (Canton, Ohio/GlenOak) both went 2 for 5. Kriger and sophomore catcher Marcus Magister (Allison Park, Pa./Hampton) both doubled.

Tindall earned the win after pitching 2 2/3 innings. Sophomore Cory Metcalf (Ashland, Ohio/Ashland) started and allowed five runs in 4 2/3 innings. Sophomore Matt Smith (Albany, N.Y./Loudonville Christian) yielded one run in 1 1/3 innings.

W&J posted six second-inning runs in the nightcap to take early control of the game. Magister's two-run double in the third cut the lead to 6-2 but W&J scored seven runs over the middle three innings in breaking the game open.

Wilson homered and also scored three runs. Seth Thompson went 3 for 5 with a double while Tyler Thompson cracked three hits.

Sophomore pitcher Kyle Silk (Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio/Cuyahoga Valley Christian) started and took the defeat for Grove City. He allowed five earned runs in 1 1/3 innings. Sophomore Steve Stombaugh (Pittsburgh, Pa./Mount Lebanon) pitched 2/3 innings of scoreless relief. Senior Zach Hillegas (Bridgeport, W. Va./Bridgeport), sophomore Chip Hasek (Valencia, Pa./Mars), sophomore Andy Klimek (Oakdale, Pa./South Fayette) and sophomore J.T. Seelman (Pittsburgh, Pa./Thomas Jefferson) all followed in relief.

W&J will play Thiel Saturday at 1 p.m. in the championship round.

Magister finished the season with single-season school records for home runs (13) and runs batted in (52). Magister and Moran both scored 43 runs, the second-highest total in program history. Senior first baseman Brad Stombaugh (Pittsburgh, Pa./Mount Lebanon) recorded 56 hits this year, which is the second-highest single-season mark at Grove City. Tindall finished his career with a Grove City-record 49 appearances.

Wilson scored 111 career runs, the most in program history. He also played in a school-record 138 games.

Grove City will graduate Hillegas, senior DH Cody Koontz (Moundsville, W. Va./John Marshall), Brad Stombaugh, Seth Thompson, Tindall and Wilson.

Thomas More Box Score            Wash. & Jeff. Box Score

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