Baseball team opens season with 2-1 record

Story by Jenna Black, Photo Editor

Heading into the eighth inning with an 11-6 lead, things looked promising for a season-opening win for the Wildcats against the Ottawa Braves on Feb. 10. That is, until the Braves scored seven unanswered runs to win the game 13-11 at Ottawa.

BU head coach Ryan Goodwin didn’t have to wait much longer for his first win as a Wildcat, though. The Wildcats swept a doubleheader, 8-5 and 5-2, against the Saint Mary Spires in BU’s home opener on Feb. 16.

After the disappointing finish against Ottawa, the Wildcats still were encouraged.

“We showed the potential we have by scoring 10 runs in five innings, but we simply didn’t finish,” said senior second baseman Gabe Greenbaum, who started the first inning off with a triple to deep right-center field.

The starting pitcher for the Wildcats against Ottawa was senior Seth Jones, the first of five pitchers to make an appearance on the mound. Jones pitched the first four inning, striking out five batters and giving up one run in the first inning.

Senior Austin Bass hit a triple in the second inning to get in two runs to extend the lead to 4-1 headed into the third inning. Senior Travis Johnson also hit in two runs in the fifth inning followed by another Bass RBI to keep the Wildcats ahead 10-4.

Junior Lake Johnson came in to pitch for the Wildcats in the eighth inning when the Braves batted in seven runs. The Wildcats tallied four errors, hit three batters, and walked six batters on the night, en route to a 13-11 loss to begin the 2016 season.

The Wildcats cleaned up many of their pitching problems against St. Mary while continuing to hit well.

In the first game, senior Charlie Coleman tripled to centerfield in the second inning and later scored off a wild pitch to tie the game 1-1. Coleman said he adjusted his hitting style from the Ottawa game.

“I really worked on staying low and seeing the pitch a lot longer, and that benefited me a lot more,” Coleman said.

Senior Seth Jones pitched three innings and was credited with the 8-5 win. Jones said the team’s hitting improved over the week’s time.

“It’s good to see some balls hit off the fence and in the outfield.” Jones said. “It shows we have a little bit of power.”

In the second game, sophomore Jack Mayes got the start and pitched the first two innings, giving up only one run. Baker pulled away in the third inning with a single from sophomore Jake Gesling and a double from sophomore Kenny Delaquila to make it 4-1.

Junior Jordan David pitched the third inning and was credited with the win. Freshman Max Taulbee stole two bases in the bottom of the sixth inning, where he later found home plate to end the game 5-2.

Goodwin was pleased with the performance, but hopes to improve on pitching throughout the season.

“I’m cocky enough to believe that if we get on a roll, then we could win the conference.” Goodwin said. “If we win that, then who knows where we can go from there?”

The Wildcats are now 2-1 and will travel to Shreveport, Louisiana, Feb. 20-21 to face the 2-5 LSU-Shreveport Pilots.