Hornets fall to Wheaton in Mid-Atlantic Regional championship game

Shenandoah University’s baseball team saw its 2017 season end one win shy of earning a spot in the NCAA Division III College World Series.

The Hornets fell to Wheaton College (Massachusetts), 1-0, in a winner-take-all game for the Mid-Atlantic Regional championship at York College of Pennsylvania’s Jacquet Field on Monday. The win sends the Lyons, seeded third in the regional, to the national championship round in Appleton, Wisconsin, this weekend.

Shenandoah, the regional’s second seed, was seeking its third World Series appearance in program history and it’s first since making back-to-back trips in 2009 and 2010.

The Hornets, who stranded nine baserunners in Monday’s loss, left the tying and winning runs at the corners in the bottom of the ninth inning after back-to-back two-out singles from Neil Dutton and Donnie Forgacs. Wheaton starting pitcher Mike Bruemmel got Nate Loman to strike out to end the threat and finish off the complete-game effort.

Bruemmel, a senior, limited Shenandoah to six hits while walking four and striking out five to improve his season record to 5-2. The left-hander was named the tournament’s Most Outstanding Player.

Bruemmel’s effort spoiled an effective outing for SU junior right-hander Colin Morse, who threw eight innings and allowed an unearned run on five hits and four walks while striking out eight. Monday’s loss was the first of the season for Morse (9-1), the Old Dominion Athletic Conference 2017 Pitcher of the Year.

Wheaton’s lone run came in the top of the second inning, when the Lyons got a pair of singles and scored on Morse’s throwing error on a sacrifice bunt attempt.

Senior right-hander Tyler Hott relieved Morse to start the ninth inning and worked out of a bases-loaded jam to keep the Lyons’ lead at one run.

Senior catcher Dan Cameron led Shenandoah with two hits, including a double in the second inning, while Dutton, Forgacs, Jake Loew and Robbie Marcelle each had a hit for the Hornets in the loss.

SU stranded runners in scoring position in the second, third, fifth, sixth and ninth innings.

The Hornets (41-10), whose 41 victories set a new program record for wins in a season, went 5-2 in the Mid-Atlantic Regional and the winner-take-all championship game by beating Wheaton, 5-4, on Sunday at PEOPLEsBank Park in York, Pennsylvania. Monday’s game was moved to York College due to weather.

Following Monday’s game, Dutton, Hott, Abel Arocho and Gerard DePhillips were selected to the Mid-Atlantic Regional all-tournament team.

Contact staff writer Brad Fauber at 540-465-5137 ext. 161, or bfauber@nvdaily.com