McMINNVILLE, Ore. – Matthew Young threw seven strong innings and Spencer Locati had four RBIs to lead visiting Whitworth to a 10-4 win over Willamette University in the finale of a Northwest Conference baseball series on Sunday afternoon at Linfield College.
Earlier on Sunday the host Bearcats pulled out a 4-3 win in 10 innings in the completion of a game suspended by darkness on Saturday evening. The action was moved to Linfield on Sunday because of wet conditions at Willamette's John Lewis Field.
The win in the finale gave Whitworth a series win over Willamette and helped the Bucs improve to 7-7 overall and 2-1 in the NWC. The Bearcats dropped to 8-9, 4-5.
Whitworth returns home to host George Fox in a three-game NWC series next weekend.
Completion Game 2: Willamette 4, Whitworth 3 (10 innings)
Brendan Natuzzi's RBI single in the bottom of the tenth inning gave Willamette a walk-off 4-3 win in the second game of the series.
Tyler Bailey's RBI single in the top of the ninth tied the game 3-3 on Saturday evening at Santiam High School before darkness suspended the contest heading to the 10th inning.
Whitworth scored first in the second inning when Bailey came home on Casey Isa's fielder's choice.
Willamette built a 3-1 lead with a run in the second and two more runs in the fourth. Eric Del Prado and Jack Brett had solo home runs for the Bearcats.
Taylor Poffenroth's home run pulled the Pirates within 3-2 in the top of the seventh.
Ryan Kingma started on the mound for Whitworth but only threw one inning. TJ Orchard followed with 5.2 innings of relief, giving up three runs on five hits. Brady Simmelink tossed the final 2.1 innings with no-hit relief to get the Bucs into the tenth frame. Austin Rice went a third of an inning in the tenth and allowed one run on one hit to fall to 0-1 this season.
Natuzzi was also the pitcher of record for Willamette. After getting the final two outs to preserve a tie on Saturday night, he threw the 10th inning on Sunday to pick up his second win of the season.
Game 3: Whitworth 10, Willamette 4
Young allowed only two runs, one earned, in seven innings to earn the pitching victory and improve to 2-2 this season. He scattered eight hits.
After the Pirates scored their first run on an infield out in the top of the second inning, the Bucs made it 3-0 in the third. Poffenroth led off with a double and scored on Joel Condreay's double. Condreay eventually came home on a balk.
Willamette got within 3-1 in the bottom of the third, scoring an unearned run on Young's fielding error.
Whitworth broke the game open with five runs in the top of the sixth inning. Bailey and Nicholas Nerud pounded back to back doubles for the first run. Then four straight walks loaded the bases and drove in two more runs. Locati's two-run single finished out the rally.
Willamette got back within 8-4 with a single run in the seventh and two more in the eighth. Del Prado's home run drove in the two runs in the eighth frame.
Locati got those two runs back with a two-run homer of his own in the top of the ninth for Whitworth. It was Locati's first drive of the season.
Mathew Pulliam tossed the final two innings for the Pirates, allowing two runs on four hits. Brandon Nelson started on the mound for Willamette and took the loss after allowing three runs on four hits in five innings.
Locati and Bailey each had two hits for Whitworth.