GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – The fourth-seeded Indiana Tech baseball fell to top seed Madonna, 4-2, on Thursday evening in the championship game of the Wolverine-Hoosier Athletic Conference (WHAC) Tournament at DeWitt Field on the campus of Cornerstone University.
The Crusaders scored three runs in the fourth to chase Tech starter Chase Keathley, who finished with a line of 3.1 innings, three earned runs on seven hits and a walk as he took the loss. Madonna led off the inning with a single and a triple before a sacrifice fly, a home run and a single chased the Warriors right hander.
The WHAC regular season champions got their fourth run of the ball game one inning later after a walk and single and a passed ball, with the last two events coming with two outs.
The Orange and Black would only get five runs on base in the next three innings and only of those would reach second base, but the visitors on the scoreboard would attempt a rally in top of the ninth.
A walk from Charlie Sipe would get things started for the Warriors in the ninth and the left fielder would come around to score two batters later as Branson Dossen smashed a triple to left field to put Tech on the board with one out and trailing by three.
Mark Carpenter would draw a walk in the next at-bat while a pass ball allowed him to move up to second and let Dossen cut the deficit in half during Steve Remesnik’s battle with Crusaders closer Bobby St. Pierre. The Fort Wayne native would fly out to right though and leadoff hitter Kyle Mead was thrown out on a close base at first base after hitting a grounder to second to end the game as Madonna completed the sweep of the WHAC regular season and tournament titles.
Sipe would finish 2-3 with a walk and a run while Tighe Koehring drew a pair of walks. Dossen would record the Warriors lone RBI and drew a walk while going 1-3 at the plate. Brian Gremaux would pitch three innings in relief, allowing one unearned run on one hit and two walks while striking out two. Zach Sailors would pitch the final 1.2 innings and gave up one hit while striking out two.
Tech (39-18) heads into the postseason with an automatic berth as the WHAC Tournament runner-ups, as Madonna clinched the conference’s first automatic berth by virtue of its regular season title The Warriors will find which Opening Round site they’ll be playing at and their opponent in the NAIA Opening Round on Friday with the Avista-NAIA World Series Selection Show at 4 p.m. The show will be streamed live at NAIANetwork.com.