Baseball Falls to Defending Champs

Baseball Falls to Defending Champs

THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. – Continuing a daunting early-season stretch, the Ursinus College baseball team suffered a 16-1 defeat at the hands of defending national champion Cal Lutheran.

The Kingsmen (9-9), who were ranked 10th in the previous NCBWA Division III poll before dropping out on Tuesday, put four runs on the board in the bottom of the first and never looked back.

Senior Travis Kozak finished 3-for-4 at the dish for the Bears (0-4). The centerfielder, who now needs one hit to reach 100 for his career, has seven in his last eight at-bats after a 4-for-4 night on Wednesday.

Sophomore Dom Fiorentino had an RBI double in the sixth to account for the lone Ursinus run.

Two first-inning errors, including one on the leadoff hitter, proved fatal to the Bears' chances. After a pop-up, Cal Lutheran rattled off three straight singles, and a two-run base hit by Kaden White capped a 4-0 outburst.

The Kingsmen tacked on single runs in the second and fifth before exploding for four in the sixth and six more in the eighth.

Senior Steve DiStefano was victimized by three errors behind him, with four of the six runs he surrendered going in the books as unearned. He allowed nine hits in five full innings.

Freshman R.J. Grace got the last two outs of the eighth in his collegiate debut. Fellow rookie Connor Barrett and junior Drew Roesch had the other hits for the Bears.

The baseball team gets two cracks at its first win of the season on Friday, when Ursinus heads to Claremont-Mudd-Scripps for a doubleheader.