Mules drop series finale against Washburn, earn 4 seed in MIAA Tournament

Written by Muleskinner Staff

(WARRENSBURG, Mo.) – Central Missouri put up seven hits but only scored two runs as they dropped the regular season finale 9-2 against Washburn on Sunday afternoon at Crane Stadium/Tompkins Field.
The Mules finished the regular season 32-16 overall and 23-13 in MIAA play.
The Mules put up one run in the home half of the first inning as Travis Stroup singled to left field and was brought home off an RBI double to right center field from Collin Nevil. UCM never led the rest of the game.
The top of the second inning was the back breaker for the Mules as they gave up seven runs to the Ichabods (21-28, 12-24 MIAA). Washburn benefited from a string of walks, wild pitches, a few hit by pitches, and a throwing error from the Mules to score seven of their nine runs in the second inning. The only hit in the inning came from Josh Crosby as he singled to right center field to plate in Riley Krane.
UCM’s offensive struggles continued in the home half of the second inning as they could not get the bats going. The Ichabods added one run in the top of the third as Cole Gardner hit a single through the left side and then stole second base. After a hit by pitch from the Mules, Gardner stole third and was plated in from a sacrifice fly by Darian Abram to make it 8-1 Washburn.
The Mules went hitless in the home half of the third inning, but worked a 1-2-3 inning in the top of the fourth as JJ Benes got all three batters out swinging. UCM got a hit in the bottom of the fourth as Matt Elliott singled to second base, but could not build from it.
Washburn scored its final run in the top of the fifth. JB Eary was walked and a double down the left line line by Landon Hay got him to third. Abram provided another sacrifice fly to score Eary and give Washburn a 9-1 lead.
The Mules second run came in the bottom of the sixth as Stroup hit a solo home run to right field. He finished the day 2-for-4 to lead the Mules.
Josh Ramirez (4-3) picked up the win for Washburn as he pitched seven complete innings, giving up just five hits and two runs.
Starter Stanton Lohrengel (3-2) took the loss for the Mules after giving up six runs and one hit in 1.1 innings of work.
UCM will be the No. 4 seed in the MIAA Tournament next week in Joplin. They will face fifth seeded Central Oklahoma. The MIAA Tournament starts Thursday, May 11, and the opening pitch between the Mules and Bronchos is set for 7:30 p.m.