Wildcat baseball sweeps four-game series from Saint Martin's - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Wildcat baseball sweeps four-game series from Saint Martin's

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ELLENSBURG, Wash. -- Junior Chris Hashimoto (Kirkland, Wash./Lake Washington HS) hit a go-ahead three-run home run in the sixth inning of the Central Washington University baseball team's 9-6 game one victory over Saint Martin's University on Sunday, and the Wildcats then completed the series sweep over the Saints with a 19-12 win in game two.

The Wildcats evened their overall record at 8-8 on the season and starts Great Northwest Athletic Conference play with a 4-0 record. They also earned a four-game sweep of a conference series for just the third time in 11 seasons, including the first such occurrence since 2008.

The Wildcats scored three runs each in the first, sixth, and seventh innings en route to the 9-6 victory in game one. CWU went ahead 3-0 after the first inning on RBI singles by junior Kyle Sani (Kennewick, Wash./Southridge HS), senior Brady Kincannon (Federal Way, Wash./Decatur HS), and a run-scoring groundout by senior David Leid (Carson City, Nev./Carson HS). 

Saint Martin's put a three-inning rally together to take a 5-3 lead after 5 1/2 innings, but Hashimoto hit a three-run home run in the bottom half of the sixth inning to regain the advantage at 6-5. Leid added a RBI single in the seventh inning, while Sani scored from third on a wild pitch and junior Jimmy Ryerson (Seattle, Wash./Roosevelt HS) earned a bases-loaded walk to score Kincannon for a 9-5 lead.

Junior pitcher Randy Button (Allyn, Wash./North Mason HS) started on the mound for the Wildcats in the opener and picked up his first win of the season (1-0). Button threw six innings, scattering 11 hits and giving up five runs. Junior reliever Drew Davidson (Long Beach, Calif./Long Beach Poly HS) earned a three-inning save -- his first of the season -- surrendering just two hits and one run.

Central Washington was outhit 13-11 but went errorless in game one while the Saints committed two errors.

The two teams combined to score 31 runs and collect 32 hits in the series finale as the Wildcats earned the 19-12 win. Central Washington scored at least one run in every inning except the second, including a 10-run fourth inning that gave the hosts a commanding 15-3 lead.

CWU scored one run in the first inning on a RBI single by Sani. After the Saints scored twice in the second inning, the Wildcats responded by scoring four runs in the bottom half to take a 5-2 lead. The CWU bats came alive again in the fourth inning, collecting eight hits and scoring 10 runs, highlighted by a three-run home run by Sani, his first of the season.

Saint Martin's didn't go away quietly, as it scored two runs in the fifth inning and five in the sixth to cut the Wildcats' lead to 16-10. Leid hit a solo home run in the fifth inning for CWU, and Reser added a three-run round-tripper in the sixth to make it a 19-10 edge after six. SMU scored the final two runs of the game in the top of the seventh.

Central Washington had a season-high 18 hits in the finale but matched a season-high with four errors defensively.

Junior right-hander Jason Lotzer (Lynnwood, Wash.) started game two for the Wildcats and earned his first win of the season (1-0), throwing four innings and giving up five runs -- only two of which were earned -- while striking out five batters.

Senior Brett Bielec (Port Orchard, Wash./North Mason HS) was 4 for 4 in game two and scored all four times he reached base. Sani was 3 for 4 and drove in a season-high five runs while scoring twice. Both players finished the day 5 for 9, with Sani driving in six runs in the two games.

A total of four Wildcats, including Bielec and Sani, collected four hits on the day. Senior Derrick Webb (Ephrata, Wash.) was 4 for 6 with four RBI and Leid was 4 for 8 and plated three runners. Hashimoto and Kincannon each added three hits on the day, with Hashimoto driving in four runs.

Central Washington is scheduled to step out of conference play this Wednesday (Mar. 21), visiting Whitworth University for a 1 p.m. doubleheader. The Wildcats then host Western Oregon University in an early first-place showdown next Saturday and Sunday (Mar. 24-25).
 
GAME ONE: Central Washington 9, Saint Martin's 6
----------------------------------------------------------------------
Saint Martin's...... 000 311 001  -  6 13  2      (7-18, 3-4 GNAC)
Central Washington.. 300 003 30X  -  9 11  0      (7-8, 3-0 GNAC)
GAME TWO: Central Washington 19, Saint Martin's 12
----------------------------------------------------------------------
Saint Martin's...... 002 1   25 2 - 12 13  2      (7-19, 3-5 GNAC)
Central Washington.. 104 (10)13 X - 19 18  4      (8-8, 4-0 GNAC)
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