Baseball loses both in doubleheader, now tied with Ball State in MAC West

The Central Michigan baseball team dropped both games of a doubleheader Saturday against Ball State, losing its first Mid-American Conference series of the season.

CMU falls to 22-15 overall and 11-4 in the MAC. It now sits tied with Ball State for first place in the MAC West.

The Chippewas lost the second game 5-2. Junior right-hander Jake Sabol took the loss, giving up three earned runs on six hits in 3 and 1/3 innings pitched.

“We fell a little short of our goal of winning,” said coach Steve Jaksa. “Ultimately, that’s what you hope to do. We did a lot of good things and we just fell short a little bit today.”

Sabol (4-4, 5.29 ERA) cruised through the first inning but ran into trouble in the second when a fielding error by junior shortstop Robbie Harman and wild pitch allowed Ball State to score a pair of runs.

The Cardinals added two more in the third after three hits and a failed pickoff attempt by Sabol.

Sophomore Nate Theunissen hit a two-run home run — the Chippewas’ only source of production — in the fourth, but it was not enough to beat the club leading the MAC in offense.

“They had a couple guys pitching down the stretch that pitched pretty good and we couldn’t get to them enough,” Jaksa said.

Game 1

CMU allowed Ball State to score three first-inning runs and lost 3-2 in the opener of Saturday’s doubleheader at Theunissen Stadium, its first home loss of the season.

Sophomore left-hander Rick Dodridge took the loss in his shortest stint of the season. In one inning of work, Dodridge allowed three earned runs on three hits.

Freshman reliever Dietrich Enns came in and held the Cardinals scoreless in 6 and 2/3 innings, giving up just three hits and striking out six.

The Chippewas made a late-game rally, scoring two in the bottom of the ninth, but pinch-hitter Tyler Kipke popped out and senior Billy Anderson struck out with a runner on base to end the comeback bid.

“I thought we battled hard — yeah, we hit into some double plays — but I also felt we came back again,” Jaksa said. “We just needed to get another hit or so, and we just didn’t get it today.”