March 04, 2009

Pipers drop pair of games to Yellowjackets

The Pipers opened the pair of games as the visitors on the scoreboard. In the bottom half of the first inning, UW-Superior led off with a pair of triples and a sacrifice fly to go up 2-0.

In the top of the fifth, Hamline manufactured a run to cut the lead to one. Lincoln Hughes (Jr., Inver Grove Heights, Minn.) hit a one-out single to get on base and then advanced to second on a UW-Superior error. Dan Kaczrowski (Sr., St. Anthony, Minn.) hit a single to center field to drive Hughes home.

The Pipers got a runner into scoring position in the seventh inning when Hughes hit another one-out single to get on base and advanced to second on a two-out single from Kaczrowksi.

A Piper groundout to end the inning, and the game, prevented the Pipers from preserving their undefeated record.

Kaczrowski was 3-for-4 in the game with the lone Hamline RBI. Hughes was 2-for-3 in scoring the Pipers’ only run. Matt Mullendore (So., Amery, Wis.) pitched a complete game for Hamline, giving up five hits and one walk while striking out seven batters in taking the loss on the mound.

Hamline was the home team in game two and mimicked the Yellowjackets’ first game performance by scoring two runs in the bottom half of the first inning.

Tres Humerickhouse (So., Farmington, Minn.) was the first Piper on-base after hitting a two-out double to right field. Alex Buresh (Jr., Vadnais Heights, Minn.) drew a walk and then Hughes was hit by a pitch to load the bases. Humerickhouse and Buresh scored when the Yellowjackets’ shortstop misplayed a ball hit by Tony Rogers (So., St. Michael, Minn.).

The Yellowjackets scored three runs in the top of the third on two hits and one Piper error, taking a 3-2 lead. They added another run in the fourth to take a 4-2 lead.

The Pipers cut the lead to 4-3 in the bottom of the inning by scoring a run on two hits. Hughes drew a one-out walk and then stole second to get into scoring position. After a Yellowjacket pitching change, Bill Sand (Sr., White Bear Township, Minn.) hit an RBI single to center field to score Hughes.

The bottom of the fifth saw the Pipers challenge to put runs on the scoreboard, as they had runners on second and third on two hits, but couldn’t drive them home. They did put a run on the scoreboard in the bottom of the seventh to tie it up and send the game into extra innings.

Kaczrowski hit a lead-off single to start the seventh. He was bunted over to second and send to third on a single by Buresh. Hughes then scored Kaczrowski to tie the game.

After a scoreless eighth inning, the Yellowjackets scored two runs in the top of the ninth on two hits and one Piper error. The Pipers had runners in scoring position once again in the ninth, but couldn’t score to send the game to a tenth inning.

Humerickhouse went 2-for-4 with a run scored in game two while Sand went 2-for-5 with an RBI.

With the pair of losses, the Pipers move to 4-2, 0-0 MIAC. The Yellowjackets open the season at 2-0, 0-0 WIAC. The Pipers are now off until March 20 when they will head outdoors to begin play in the Greater Phoenix Invitational in Arizona.