Historic baseball season ends with loss to West Virginia State
BECKLEY, W.Va. (May 13) – The Wheeling University baseball team was unable to climb out of a first inning deficit in a 6-2 loss to West Virginia State in an elimination game in the Mountain East Conference (MEC) Tournament Friday afternoon at Epling Stadium.
The Wheeling University baseball team concludes its historic season at 27-14 overall.
West Virginia State (29-8) plated four runs in the top of the first inning to put the Cardinals in a first-inning deficit for the second-straight day.
Wheeling managed to slice the deficit in half with two runs in the fifth on base hits by juniorAnthony May(Baldwinsville, N.Y./Charles W. Baker) and seniorLuis Dominguez(Bronx, N.Y./Cardinal Spellman).
The Yellow Jackets immediately rebuilt their lead to four, 6-2, with two runs in the sixth to chase starting pitcherLogan Pillars(Rock Falls, Ill./Rock Falls). The combination of sophomoreHayden Scudder(Spring Hill, Tenn./Spring Hill), seniorNick Luciano(Apollo, Pa./Kiski Area) andAlbert Baez(Fort Worth, Texas/Timber Creek) tossed 3.1 innings of perfect relief to limited the damage to six runs.
Despite the superb effort of the bullpen, Wheeling was limited to a ninth inning solo home run by juniorFrancisco Morales(Dorado, Puerto Rico/ Colegio Laico de Levittown) to officially close the book on the 2021 season.
The loss concludes a historic year for the Wheeling baseball team, orchestrated by MEC Coach of the YearRyan Lewicki. The team made its first-ever appearance in the MEC Tournament after winning the North Division title and posting a program-record 27 wins and established multiple team records in the process. It was the program's first postseason appearance since the 2011 West Virginia Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (WVIAC) Tournament.
The Cardinals established new single-season team records in home runs, RBIs, runs scored, stolen bases, walks drawn, slugging percentage, on-base percentage and saves.
Five individual single-season records also were established this season. JuniorChris Iazzetta(Clinton, N.J./IMG Academy) and sophomoreRiley Cameron(Vass, N.C./Union Pines) each hit seven home runs to break the single-season record. Iazzetta also established a new RBI record with 38 this season.
Dominguez broke the runs scored record with 39, juniorConnor Watt(Roanoke, Va./Glenvar) stole a record 18 bases, while Baez converted a record seven saves.
In addition to his record for runs scored, Dominguez concluded his career with a 25-game hitting streak and a streak of 29 games reaching base.