Baseball's focus turns to MAC tournament as season finale is rained out

Sophomore outfielder Drew Lechnir meets with his coach after getting a hit on Friday, May 6, in Theunissen Stadium.

Inclement weather ended Central Michigan baseball's regular season a few innings early. 

The season finale between the Chippewas and Toledo was called off after storms hit the area Sunday. Toledo was leading the game 4-1 at the time of the cancellation, which came after the bottom of the third inning. 

Jakob Marsee provided CMU's only run of the game with a solo home run in the first inning. Ben Vitas started the game on the mound, allowing four runs in two innings. 

CMU (38-16, 30-7) won't have to wait long to see the Rockets again, as the two teams will meet in the first game of the Mid-American Conference tournament Wednesday. The tournament will be hosted by Ball State, which locked up the regular season title with a 13-2 win over Miami (Ohio) Saturday. 

The Chippewas (No. 2 seed) and Rockets (No. 3 seed) will be the first game on Wednesday, as Ball State (No. 1 seed) will play Ohio (No. 4 seed) in the second game of the four-team, three-day tournament. First pitch is scheduled for 10:30 a.m.

The winners of Wednesday's game will play each other at 4 p.m. Thursday, while the losers of the initial games will play at 10:30 a.m. The team that wins on both Wednesday and Thursday earns a trip to the championship game Saturday. 

The double-elimination tourney will conclude Saturday, with a championship game scheduled for 12:30 p.m. Should the team from the winner's bracket lose, a second elimination game would be played to determine the champion. 

The winner of the MAC tournament will earn the conference's bid to the NCAA tournament. CMU has made two straight NCAA tournament appearances. The conference tournament was canceled in 2021 and CMU earned the NCAA bid as the regular season champion.