AUBURNDALE, Fla. – Westfield State surrendered 20 hits and 17 runs to Washington University (of St. Louis, Mo.) on Thursday afternoon, as the Owls fell 17-4 to the Bears at Lake Myrtle Park.
The Bears, who are receiving votes in both national Division III polls, struck for three runs in the top of the first, and five in the top of the second to put Westfield in a deep hole early in the game.
Westfield errors helped key both big innings. Thomas Gardner had an RBI single in the first inning and a 2-run double in the second inning.
Trailing 11-1 in the sixth, Westfield State Anthony Crowley powered his first home run of the season with a line shot deep over the left centerfield wall.
The Owls faced the 10 run rule in the seventh, trailing 12-2 after Caleb Durbin's solo shot in the top half of the inning, but Aaron Clancy led with a single, Brett Dooley slapped a double into the right field corner, and pinch hitter Jamie Butler delivered an RBI single to score Clancy. Pinch hitter Alex Benevides lofted a fly ball to center that let Dooley scamper home from third to trim the lead to 12-4.
The relentless Bears' lineup tacked on five more runs in the top of the fifth. John Gegetskas took the loss for the Owls, working five innings, allowing 12 hits and 11 runs (6 earned), while striking out six.
Washington's Matt Ashbaugh started and worked six innings to get the win.
Durbin finished with four hits, and three more Washington hitters rapped out three hits each. For Westfield, Nick Martin had a pair of hits. Crowley's home run was the 22nd of his career, which has him just two behind Dave Carlucci '85.