CHILLICOTHE, Ohio -- The 24th-ranked Denison baseball team suffered a 12-6 setback to Oberlin in the first elimination game of the 2017 North Coast Athletic Conference Tournament on Friday at VA Memorial Stadium.
The Yeoman grabbed the early lead with on an RBI single by Milo Sklar in the first inning. After a scoreless second, the Big Red offense erupted for five runs on the strength of six hits in the third. Joseph Maydwell opened the frame with a base hit up the middle, while freshman Jake Ryder followed with a double to left center. Following a base on balls to Sam Frazen, senior Eric Zmuda continued the hit parade with a single through the right side that scored Maydwell.
Senior Evan Flax knocked in the second run of the inning with a sacrifice fly to right field. Freshman Brian McAuliffe ripped a base hit through the right side that scored Frazen before a double down the left line by Tanner Johnson scored Zmuda. Junior Noah Hahn capped off the offensive surge with a single through the left side that plated McAuliffe.
Oberlin went on to score three runs in the third, fourth and fifth frames to build a 10-5 advantage. Ryder drove in pinch hitter Grady Paine with a ground out to short in the sixth to shrink the margin to four. The Yeomen set the final score with a two spot in the eighth frame behind two hits and a pair of defensive miscues.
Johnson finished the game 3-for-4 with two doubles and an RBI, while Zmuda, McAuliffe and Ryder all had a hit, a run and an RBI. Zack Huarte (6-2) took the loss after surrendering seven runs (five earned) on six hits with a strikeout and three walks across three innings of work.
Six different Oberlin hitters registered multiple hits highlighted by Quin Butler's three-hit outing. Sklar finished with a game-high three RBIs, while Brendan Mapes touched the dish three times. Sklar also got the win in relief after tossing the final six frames, giving up one run on four hits with four strikeouts.
Denison's bows out of the NCAC Tournament with a record of 29-12. The 29 victories are the second-most in program history. The win total is two shy of the high-water mark set in 2003 and 2004.