St. Louis, Mo., April 20, 2019 – The No. 16 Washington University in St. Louis baseball team captured the program's eighth University Athletic Association (UAA) Title Saturday after picking up a pair of wins in a doubleheader over Emory University at Kelly Field.
The Bears improved to 25-5-1 (11-2 UAA) with a 3-2 win in game one and a 7-2 victory in game two. The Eagles fell to 19-15 overall (7-4 UAA) after the doubleheader. Despite being outhit in the two games, 16-13, WashU took two games with timely hitting and exceptional plays in the field.
Game 1: WashU 3 – Emory 2
The first game of Saturday's doubleheader proved to be a pitcher's game down to the final stretch. WashU pulled out a tightly contested game after freshman right fielder Jackson Gray delivered the game-winning RBI in the bottom of the eighth inning after the Eagles rallied to tie the score at 2-2 in the top half of the frame.
Junior pitcher John Brinkman singled to centerfield with one out in the eighth. He advanced to second base by beating the throw by the Eagles catcher on a bunt off the bat of junior first baseman Brian Schutter. One batter later, Gray drove the ball back up the middle into centerfield to score Brinkman to give the Bears the 3-2 advantage heading into the ninth.
Brinkman mowed through Emory's batters in the ninth with a three-up, three-down inning to earn his first win of the year after shifting to the mound from first base in the eighth. He was involved in all three runs for WashU as he knocked in the first run in the first with a double and scored its second run in the bottom of the sixth on a wild pitch. Brinkman finished the game 3-for-3 with two runs, a walk and a run batted in, while also picking up the win.
Sophomore pitcher Ryan Loutos started the game and pitched 6.1 innings, allowing seven hits, two walks, one unearned run while striking out two batters. Sophomore Jared Fong came on in relief of Loutos in the seventh and got the Bears out of the inning with a strike 'em out, throw 'em out double play as he induced a caught looking third strike while junior catcher Thomas Gardner threw out a potential base stealer at second base to end the inning.
Game 2: WashU 7 – Emory 2
The Bears took control of game two from the get go as junior pitcher Matt Ashbaugh pitched a one-two-three top of the first including two strikeouts before Brinkman hit a two-run homer in the bottom half of the frame to push WashU ahead 2-0. Brinkman turned on an inside pitch sending it on a line over the left field fence knocking in senior second baseman Evan Nagel in the process.
The Bears tacked on four more runs in the fourth inning. Gardner had a run-scoring single before scoring in a run-down between third and home which he was struck by the third baseman's intended throw to the catcher. Freshman shortstop Caleb Durbin had a run scoring double that plated sophomore left fielder Henry Singer before he scored on a wild pitch to make the score 6-0 in favor of the Bears.
Ashbaugh improved to 5-0 on the year by pitching six solid innings, allowing six hits and two runs. The Houston, Texas-native struck out five batters. Freshman Matt Lopes earned the three-inning save by pitching the final three innings of the contest. He allowed one-batter to reach on a walk but otherwise held the Eagles intact, striking out four in the process of his fourth save on the year.
WashU's final run of the game came in the eighth inning on a double off the bat of Nagel. He sent a line drive down the right field line to score sophomore third baseman Collin Kahal.
WashU and Emory will close out its four-game series on Sunday, April 21 beginning at 12 p.m. The Bears will honor its two senior members of the roster prior to first pitch tomorrow morning. Be sure to stay up to date on all your Bears scores and awards by following @WashUBears on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.