CMU baseball falls to WMU in final series

Chippewas end season 8-22 in MAC play


Right-handed pitcher Bryce Hellgeth throws a fastball down against Western Michigan University Friday, May 17, in Keilitz Field at Theunissen Stadium. The senior took the mound during the sixth inning. (Hailey Urbane | CM-Life) 

Heading into the ninth with an 8-3 lead in its second matchup against rivals Western Michigan Friday, Central Michigan baseball looked to close out the game.

The Broncos had other plans, as they scored five runs to tie at eight. Looking for an answer in the bottom of the ninth, Jacob Donahue delivered with two outs, hitting a walk-off home run to give CMU the win and tie the series at one. 

However, the momentum didn’t carry onto the next game. The Chippewas went on to get shutout on Saturday, 10-0, to drop its final series of the season, 1-2.

Game 1

Thursday's matchup saw a slow start on the offensive end for both teams, which held each other  scoreless for four innings. 

However, the Broncos struck in the top of the fifth, scoring three runs that began with an RBI single from second baseman Grady Mee. 

The Chippewas answered with a run of their own in the bottom half of the inning, on a fielder's choice that scored Cole Prout.

CMU Senior Marquis Jackson rounds to second base against Western Michigan University Thursday, May 16, in Keilitz Field at Theunissen Stadium. Jackson had two hits, extending his hit streak to seven games. (Hailey Urbane | CM-Life) 

CMU wasn’t done, as they scored another run in the bottom of the sixth. Prout hit an RBI single to cut the deficit to 3-2.

That was all the Chippewas would get in the matchup; both teams were held scoreless for the final three innings. 

Pitcher Ben Vitas took the loss on the mound, giving up three runs on nine hits with two walks and three strikeouts in nine innings pitched. 

* Gallery: CMU Baseball vs. Western Michigan Home Opener *

Game 2

Looking to rebound in game two, the Chippewas offense came out firing on Friday. 

With the Broncos holding a 3-1 lead heading into the bottom of the third, CMU’s bats came alive, and it scored six runs in the inning. The scoring started when right fielder Marquis Jackson hit an RBI double. 

It continued as third baseman Ely Stuart singled to left center to bring in Jackson and tie the game at three. The Chippewas racked up four more runs off of four hits in the inning to extend their lead to 7-3.

The Central Michigan Chippewas take on the Western Michigan Broncos during senior night. The final score 9-8 split the series on Friday, May 17, in Keilitz Field at Theunissen Stadium. (Hailey Urbane | CM-Life) 

CMU added a run in the bottom of the fifth on a fielder's choice that scored Donahue.  

After four scoreless innings, the Chippewas gave up five runs in the top of the ninth to tie the game at eight. However, Donahue came to the rescue in the bottom half of the inning with a walk-off home run to give CMU the 9-8 win. 

Donahue came up big for Central Michigan throughout the matchup. He went 4-for-5 at the plate, scoring three runs and one RBI. 

* Gallery: CMU Baseball vs Western Michigan University Game 2 *

Game 3

In their final game of the season, the Chippewas struggled. They were shut out by the Broncos’ pitchers and lost, 10-0, on Saturday. 

CMU was held to five hits on the day, while WMU racked up seven. 

It was a close game throughout the first three innings, and the Broncos held the 1-0 lead after three innings.

CMU infielder Ely Stuart defends third base as a Western Michigan University player slides into the bag Saturday, May 18, at Keilitz Field at Theunissen Stadium. (Hailey Urbane | CM-Life)

That all changed in the top of the fourth, when WMU scored nine runs; the Chippewas' bullpen gave up six free bases and five hits in the inning. 

CMU gave up eight walks in the game. 

In Jake Sabol’s first year as head coach, CMU ended the season 17-38 overall and 8-22 in conference play. This is the Chippewas' first losing season since 2018. 

*Gallery: CMU Baseball vs Western Michigan University game 3 season closer*