Wagar Throws 9 Innings for Puget Sound, as Loggers Defeat Bearcats, 12-4

Semlacher and Chinn Hit Doubles for Willamette

By Robert McKinney, Athletics Communications Director, (503) 370-6110

TACOMA, WASH. -- University of Puget Sound pitcher Steve Wagar threw all nine innings and limited Willamette University to six hits, as the Loggers defeated the Bearcats, 12-4, in a Northwest Conference baseball game on Saturday, April 26 at Logger Field. The Loggers broke a 4-4 tie when Lucas Stone opened the bottom of the fifth inning with a solo home run.

Puget Sound improved to 14-17 on the season, 12-10 in the Northwest Conference. Willamette fell to 22-15 overall, 14-8 in the NWC.

Wagar, who upped his pitching record to 3-3 this spring, did not allow any runs after the Loggers took a 5-4 lead on Stone's home run. Puget Sound added three runs in the sixth, two in the seventh and two in the eighth to pull away.

Tosh Semlacher (Sr., CF, Gold River, CA/Jesuit HS) and Brandon Chinn (Sr., OF/1B, Salem, OR/Sprague HS) each recorded a double for Willamette.

Willamette opened the scoring with a run in the second inning. With two outs Brad Breier (Jr., C, Torrance, CA/South HS) singled to left. He went to second on a wild pitch and scored when Chinn followed with a double to left field.

The Bearcats expanded the lead to 2-0 in their next trip to the plate. Devin Bales (Jr., 3B/OF, Graham, WA/Graham-Kapowsin HS/Grays Harbor College) singled to start the inning. He stolen second, and then went on to third on a throwing error by the catcher. Bales scored on a wild pitch.

Tommy Kawamura (Sr., SS/2B, Renton, WA/Lindbergh HS), who was batting when Bales scored, eventually walked. Rolenn Himuro (Jr., OF, Honolulu, HI/Punahou School) provided a sacrifice bunt, but consecutive outs prevented the Bearcats from scoring additional runs.

Puget Sound tied the game with two runs in the bottom of the third and moved in front 4-2 with two runs in the fourth.

In the third, the Loggers registered three hits, including an RBI single by Troy Kakugawa and an RBI double by Connor Savage. In the fourth, a hit batsmen and an error put runners at first and second. A sacrifice bunt moved them into scoring position. After an out on a pop-up, Christian Carter singled to drive in Jeff Walton and Nathan Backes with unearned runs.

WU pushed across two runs in the top of the fifth to tie the score. Shea Harrison (So., 2B/RHP, El Cerrito, CA/El Cerrito HS) singled, Bales walked and Kawamura reached first on an error, as the Bearcats loaded the bases with no outs. Himuro fouled out and then Semlacher belted a double down the left field line. Harrison and Bales crossed the plate.

Stone's solo home run in the bottom of the inning, put the Loggers in front. In the sixth, Backes singled and Addison Melzer doubled. Both runners scored on double by Nick Funyak. Later, Funyak reached home on a sacrifice fly by Kakugawa to increase Puget Sound's lead to 8-4.

Backes added a two-run homer in the seventh inning. The final two runs scored on bases-loaded walks with two outs in the eighth.

Funyak, Kakugawa and Backes each earned two hits for UPS. Funyak was 2 for 3 with three runs and two RBIs. Kakugawa went 2 for 3, while scoring twice and driving in two runs. Backes was 2 for 5 with three runs and two RBIs.

Willamette starting pitcher Tyler Olson (Jr., RHP, Yuba City, CA/Yuba City HS) took the loss and fell to 3-2 on the season. He threw six innings, allowing eight runs -- six earned -- and eight hits. He registered two strikeouts with no walks.

The teams will play a doubleheader on Sunday, April 27 to conclude the season. First pitch is set for 12 p.m. (PDT).

BOX SCORE

University of Puget Sound 12
Willamette University 4

Tosh Semlacher drove in two runs with a double in the fifth inning.

Tosh Semlacher drove in two runs with a double in the fifth inning.