Top-Ranked Linfield Holds Off Sagehens 6-2

Top-Ranked Linfield Holds Off Sagehens 6-2

Claremont, Calif. - The No. 1-ranked Linfield Baseball team put together two-run rallies with two outs in the first and third innings, and held on from there for a 6-2 win over No. 16 Pomona-Pitzer on Friday afternoon at Alumni Field.

With the win, the Wildcats (ranked No. 1 by the ABCA and No. 2 by D3baseball.com) improve to 23-5 on the season, while the Sagehens (No. 16 by the ABCA and No. 22 by D3baseball.com) see their record slip to 22-8 with the loss.

Senior outfielders Nick Gentili (Glendale, Calif.) and Erik Munzer (Beverly Hills, Calif. - pictured) were each 2-for-4 at the plate for the Sagehens, while sophomore pitcher Jake Bruml (San Mateo, Calif.) had a solo homer. Bruml suffered only his second collegiate loss, falling to 6-2 this season and 13-2 in his career, while Linfield starter Chris Haddeland went the distance, allowing seven hits, to improve to 8-1.

Bruml retired the first two batters in the first inning, but Jake Wylie doubled down the left field line and was singled home by Kramer Lindell. Lindell would later come home on the back end of a double steal to make the score 2-0 after the first.

The lead was then pushed to 4-0 in the third inning with two outs, as Wylie walked, Lindell was hit by a pitch, and both came home on a double to left-center from Nick Fisher.

Gentili got the Sagehens going in the fourth inning as he started things off with a single to left and moved to second on a groundout. Sophomore third baseman E.J. Lopez (Fresno, Calif.) then lined a single back up the middle to plate Gentili with the first run of the game for Pomona-Pitzer.

The Sagehens made a bid for another run in the fifth as sophomore second baseman Ryan Madden (Oakland, Calif.) led off with a walk and moved to third with two outs, but senior left fielder Mike Moyer's bid for an RBI single was tracked down on the outfield grass by second baseman Tim Wilson, who was able to get the out at first.

Lindell and Fisher then started the sixth with back-to-back doubles, giving Fisher three RBI on the day. Clayton Truex lined a single to score Fisher with the sixth run of the game. Bruml homered to center in the bottom of the sixth to make the score 6-2, but that was as close as the Sagehens could come.

Pomona-Pitzer did bid for more in the eighth, as Moyer and Gentili both singled with one out, bringing Bruml to the plate. Bruml hit a sharp grounder back up the middle, but Linfield shortstop Corey VanDomelen ranged to his left to track it down and flipped to Wilson at second, who was able to turn the double play to end the inning.

Lindell was 2-for-3 with three runs scored for the Wildcats, while Fisher was 2-for-3 with two doubles and three RBI.

The two teams will complete their three-game series tomorrow with a doubleheader, beginning at 11 a.m.