ENID, Okla. -- The WolfPack battled all game, pelting 15 hits and scoring 11 runs against the defending champion, Western Oklahoma State. Unfortunately, the Pioneers bats were equally hot scorching 16 hits and putting up 17 runs, handing Madison College their first loss in the tournament.
The Madison College baseball team knew what it was playing for Wednesday, and thanks to some rain Thursday as well, the chance to be the last remaining unbeaten team at the NJCAA Division II World Series. The 'Pack came out swinging in the first inning. The team scored four runs, including a two-run homer by sophomore Jake Page. However, Western Oklahoma answered with five runs of their own in the bottom half of the inning. Madison College tied things up in the second, with Beau Goff scoring on a wild pitch. Then, the tide would turn in favor of the Pioneers in a big way.
Western Oklahoma scored three in the third, two in the fourth, and hit a grand slam in the fifth. Just like that, the Pioneers found themselves up 14-5 after five innings of play.
To their credit, the WolfPack never quit fighting. Madison College knocked in three more runs in sixth, cutting the deficit to 14-8. The momentum immediately swung back to Western Oklahoma once again though. The Pioneers hit two more homers in the bottom of the sixth, going up 17-8, and finished with six homeruns for the game.
The WolfPack would trail 17-10 entering the eighth inning, before storms would halt the game for the evening. The teams resumed play at 2:00 PM on Thursday, May 31, and although Madison was able to score one more run in the ninth they would fall 17-11.
Paul Poirier (6-3) took the loss for Madison College. Poirier pitched just two-thirds of an inning, giving up three hits, five earned runs, and walking one. Danny Sullivan, who came in in relief for the WolfPack, pitched three and two-thirds innings, giving up seven hits, eight earned runs, walking two and striking out four.
Jake Page (1-for-5), who hit the first inning home run for the WolfPack, finished with a team-high four RBIs. Luke Maldonado (4-for-6) brought in three runs, while Landon Tenhagen (1-for-5) added two more. Maldonado also scored three runs for Madison College. Michael Cruz (3-for-5) finished with a game-high eight RBI for Western Oklahoma State.
Madison College must now face top-ranked LSU-Eunice in an elimination game beginning at 3:30 PM Thursday, May 31.