CHICAGO -- The Sabercats were ever so close to their second win of the season, but their persistence was left without a tangible reward in the Windy City.
After a 0-20 battering in the first game at Illinois Tech, the Sabercats had the winning run at the plate in their last at-bat of the second game, but they fell 5-4 to leave Ed Glancy Field empty-handed.
- Results: MBU 0-20 IIT, MBU 4-5 IIT
- Venue: Ed Glancy Field, Illinois Institute of Technology
- Location: Chicago
- Records: MBU (1-11), IIT (9-13)
The first game was all about Illinois Tech, who got right down to business.
Tech shelled the Sabercats in the bottom of the first inning, scoring nine runs in the at-bat before the Sabercats could stop the bleeding. It was a wound that the Sabercats never recovered from, as the Scarlet Hawks returned to score five runs in the bottom of the second. IIT kept their pitching staff fresh, as Wyatt Ronek and Chad Johnson shared the load, allowing just three hits while fanning a combined nine batters en route to the shutout win.
As a parting shot, Tech scored five more runs in the bottom of the sixth inning, handing the Sabercats a stinging blow in the opening game of the day. Alex Causey (two hits) and Kyle Cummins (one) were the only Sabercats to chalk hits in the opener.
But even after that opening loss, the Sabercats responded positively and gave the Scarlet Hawks a legitimate scare in the second game of the day.
Shane Paruch got it started with an RBI double in the top of the first, but Tech answered with a run of their own in the bottom half of the frame. When the hosts posted four runs total in the third and fourth innings, another IIT win was in the cards.
But the Sabercats were given their chance in the top of the sixth, scoring three runs after capitalizing on an IIT error and an RBI single from Causey. Just like that, it was a one-run ballgame.
But the comeback stopped there, as the Sabercats were retired in the final inning with the go-ahead run at the plate. Even after that three-run rally, the Sabercats couldn't find a way past the Scarlet Hawks.
MBU Batting Order (Game 1) - Hempel (3B), Matheis (LF), Causey (SS), Bailey (C), Paruch (P), Croswell (2B), Smith (RF), Cummins (1B), Gieger (CF)
MBU Batting Order (Game 2) - Hempel (SS), Matheis (LF), Causey (C), Bailey (P), Paruch (3B), Cummins (1B), Croswell (2B), Smith (RF), Gieger (CF)
- Causey: 3 H, 1 RBI
- Paruch: 1 H, 1 2B, 1 RBI
- Causey: now second on the team in hits (9)
- Causey, Paruch, Cummins, and Rudy Gieger: all registered hits
- MBU: 6 hits on the day
- IIT (NCAA DIII) competes in the Northern Athletics Collegiate Conference
- The Scarlet Hawks took a spring break trip to Florida, where they played nine games
- IIT began NACC conference play in late March and hold a 3-5 conference record
The Sabercats will travel to Rockford, Illinois on Thursday to take on the Rockford University Regents in a 3:00 p.m. doubleheader. Follow at mbusabercats.com/composite.