LEWISTON, Idaho -- Despite tying the game in the ninth to force extra innings, the No. 21-ranked Bellevue University baseball team suffered a 3-2 10-inning defeat to No. 23 Indiana Tech in the first game of the 2019 Avista NAIA World Series at Harris Field on the campus of Lewis-Clark State College.
#21 Bellevue: 46-15
#23 Indiana Tech: 42-14-1
Recap: Indiana Tech 3, Bellevue 2 (10 Innings)
Bellevue had the better of chances in the early going. The Bruins loaded the bases in the first and got a leadoff double from Austin Alexander in the second inning that the Warriors' Charles Dunavan was able to work around.
Indiana Tech got on the board in the bottom of the fourth. A leadoff infield single from Reese Olden and a stolen base gave the Warriors a runner in scoring position. BU starter Stephen Knapp looked like he would escape the inning without allowing a run after getting two outs but then a booted ground ball allowed Olden to come around with the game's first run.
The Warriors picked up four hits in the fifth as they added to their lead. With two outs and runners on first and second, Glen McClain singled to right-center to chase in Jacob Alvidrez to double their lead to 2-0. The Bruins got out of the inning when Branson Dossen flew out to the right field warning track.
BU got on the board in the sixth inning. Cody Banks ripped a single back through the box and advanced to second on a bunt from Tommy Hansen. Riley Baasch then delivered a line drive two-out single to left field to score Banks from second and cut the lead in half.
Bellevue got a two-out base runner in the eighth when Hansen reached on an error and Baasch followed up with a base hit to left but Indiana Tech reliever Joe Pratt escaped the frame with the lead as he got Austin Alexander to strike out to end the inning.
Indiana Tech again threatened in the eighth when back-to-back hits to put runners on the corners but Knapp induced a ground ball double play off the bat of Spenser McGee as BU escaped the inning 6-4-3.
BU mounted a rally in the ninth that started when Stuart Eurich hustled to turn a bloop to right-center into a double. A walk to Wataru Kazama put the go-ahead run on base but Travis Tanaka grounded into a double play and Bellevue was down to their last out. Kory Longaker came through with a double of his own to score Kazama, tying the game and forcing extra innings.
In the top of the 10th, Bellevue had Cody Banks lead off by reaching on an error and Alexander acquire first after a wild pitch on strike three but the inning ended when Eurich grounded out to second.
Bruin reliever Brandon Desjardins struck out Olden to open the bottom of the 10th but a single from McClain and a walk to Dossen gave the Warriors runners on first and second with just one out. Desjardins worked a full count on Jake DeFries but DeFries came through with a single through the right side to plate courtesy runner Brandon Burch with the game-winning run.
Stephen Knapp retired the first six batters he faced and allowed just one base-runner through the first three innings but did not factor in the decision. Over 8.2 innings of work he limited Indiana Tech to a pair of runs – just one earned – while scattering 10 hits.
Desjardins (2-3) took the loss in relief.
Dunavan, the Indiana Tech starter, threw 6.1 innings of four-hit ball, allowing just one run before exiting after being hit with a comebacker.
Landon Bloir (3-1) picked up the win with 1.1 innings of hitless relief for the Warriors.
Indiana Tech faces top-seeded and No. 2-ranked Tennessee Wesleyan tomorrow at 3 p.m.
Bellevue plays an elimination game tomorrow at 8:30 a.m. against the loser of the 4-5 game between No. 3 Faulkner and No. 4 Georgia Gwinnett.