CMU baseball drops heartbreaker against Bowling Green

Junior catcher Nick Dardas, left, and Bowling Green leftfielder Dj Newman, right, react to the umpire calling Newman safe at the plate during a game against Bowling Green Friday, March 31 in Keilitz Field at Theunissen Stadium. This run was the second one scored from the at bat.

With a runner on third in top of the ninth, Central Michigan baseball (13-12, 4-4) was two outs away from evening the weekend series against Bowling Green (11-13, 6-5) at a game apiece. That was until a hard-hit ball to CMU second baseman Luke Sefcik changed the game completely.

Sefcik would field the ball clean with the runner staying at third, but an offset throw to first allowed BGSU to tie the game at one. On the play sophomore infielder/outfielder Robby Morgan IV would exit the game with an apparent injury.

In the next at bat, the Falcons sophomore outfielder Gavin Ganun, hit a single into the right field gap scoring Nathan Archer giving BGSU a 3-2 lead heading into the bottom of the ninth.

The Chippewas would go down in order in the bottom half of the inning giving the Falcons the 3-2 victory along with the overall series win.

Starting the day on the mound for CMU was junior right-handed pitcher Keegan Batka. Batka threw 6 1/3 innings, while allowing one run, on five hits, one walk and struck out seven. His only mistake would come in the fourth when BGSU senior Nathan Rose took a pitch deep to tie the game at one.

“Keegan was outstanding,” head coach Jordan Bischell said. “He's had one or two, not great starts but if you look at the vast majority of his outings, he's given us a great chance to win, and we know he'll continue to do that.”

Graduate student left-handed pitcher Ryan Palmblad replaced Batka in the seventh with one out and a runner on second. Palmblad worked out of the jam after striking out the final batter to end the inning.

In the top of the eighth inning freshman infielder Sam Siedel hit a dribbler down the first base line, resulting in a tough play for CMU catcher junior Nick Dardas as he threw the ball away as Siedel advanced to third on the play.

That was until home plate umpire James Muhleck called Siedel out for interference. The Falcons head coach Kyle Hallock would come out of the dugout irate with the call and would eventually be ejected from the game.

CMU led most of the game, starting in the second inning when Dardas singled to left field scoring Sefcik from second. The Chippewas other run of the day came in the fourth inning when junior transfer Marquis Jackson grounded out with the bases loaded scoring Sefcik for the second time on the day.

Leading the way offensively for CMU was Sefcik, Dardas, Morgan, freshman Christian Mitchelle, and junior Jacob Donahue each racking a hit apiece.

CMU looks to get back on the winning side of things on Sunday when the Chippewas take on the Falcons in the series finale at 2 p.m. at Theunissen Stadium. 

“I don't think there's any concern with bouncing back,” Bischell said, “...Sun (is) gonna come up tomorrow. It's baseball. ... So, I know our guys will be excited to play.”