CMU baseball closes regular season with 3-2 win over WMU; clinches No. 3 seed in MAC tourney
Runs and hits were hard to come by on Saturday as Central Michigan closed the regular-season with a 3-2 win over Western Michigan.
The Chippewas (30-27, 17-10 Mid-American Conference) struggled to get anything going against Broncos (25-27, 14-12 MAC) starter freshman Will Nimke, recording just two hits against the young against the young right-hander. While CMU was able to get two runs across the plate, just one was earned.
“It was a gritty win today,” said head coach Steve Jaksa. “After a hard fought one yesterday with a lot of emotion it’s good to win the series.”
WMU didn’t provide much of an answer against the CMU pitching staff, either. Junior Dietrich Enns struggled early on, throwing 56 pitches in two innings but settled down, allowing just three hits and one run.
“We had him (on) a pitch count today with another short week ahead,” Jaksa said.
A pair of freshmen, Jordan Foley and Sean Renzi, came in on relief for the Chippewas. Foley threw two innings and allowed a run while Renzi threw an inning and didn’t give up anything.
In fact, Renzi pitched in all four games this week, holding opponents scoreless in 5 1/3 innings while striking out five and allowing no walks.
“He’s (Renzi) in a real good place right now,” Jaksa said. “We’d throw him tomorrow too because he’d be ready. He’s very confident.”
CMU finally took the lead in the eighth inning when senior catcher William Arnold grounded into a double play after a executed hit-and-run by junior shortstop Jordan Dean that moved senior center fielder Tyler Hall to third base.
“Dean is a great hitter with great hands and when I saw the sign there was no doubt I was getting to third base,” Hall said.
The freshmen led the way for senior Jon Weaver to claim his sixth save of the season.
With the win, CMU clinches the No. 3 seed in the upcoming MAC tournament and will play No. 6 seed Eastern Michigan on Wednesday.
“We’ll be ready for them (Eastern Michgian),” Hall said. “We’re going in and we’re expecting to win.
“We’re a confident team right now. I don’t think there is a team that wants to play us and I feel bad for whoever has to play us.”
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