The Case Western Reserve University baseball team saw its 2016 season come to a close on Thursday afternoon at the NCAA Division III West Regional Championships, as the fourth-seeded Spartans were eliminated from the tournament with a 10-0 loss to third-ranked and top-seeded Trinity University (Texas) at Avista Stadium in Spokane, Washington.
The loss concludes the season for the Spartans, who end their year with a 26-15 overall record. Case Western Reserve was making its fourth-ever appearance in the NCAA Division III Championships, and its third in the last four seasons.
Trinity got on the board in the first inning, when back-to-back doubles by Colin Serkowski and Jeremy Wolf produced the first run of the game. The Tigers added a run in the second inning, taking a 2-0 lead on a two-out RBI single by Carter McEachern.
Case Western Reserve freshman starter Mark Gross would settle in, allowing just one more run over the next three innings, on a two-out infield single in the bottom of the fourth by McEachern. However, the Spartans would struggle to score runs, leaving at least one runner stranded in each inning from the second through the sixth.
Gross would leave the game with two runners in scoring position and one out in the bottom of the sixth. Left-handed sophomore Liam Killingstad would get a groundout with the infield pulled in for the second out of the frame, but a walk and a hit batter produced a fourth run for Trinity, and a two-RBI single from Wolf pushed the lead to 6-0. The Tigers added three more runs in the seventh, including a pair on a home run by McEachern, who finished the game three-for-four with four runs batted in, and one in the eighth on a RBI single from Nick Jewett.
Gross took the loss, ending his season with a 3-5 record. He allowed four earned runs and five total on seven hits, while striking out a pair and walking three. Trinity starter Teddy Turner earned the win, improving to 6-2 on the year, allowing just four hits and striking out ten during his eight shutout innings of work.
Freshman shortstop Rocco Maue had two of the Spartans five hits in the game, going two-for-four with a double and a walk. Sophomore second baseman Alex Capetillo went one-for-one with a double and a pair of walks, while junior right fielder Tony Damiano and senior Tyler Schovanec each added base hits in the game.
Trinity, which improved to 37-7 in 2016, will take on the winner of Thursday's game between Texas-Tyler and Whitworth at noon PT on Friday.