POMONA, N.Y. - - The Wilmington University baseball team closed out the 2023 regular season with a Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference split at Dominican on Wednesday night at Clover Stadium.
Matt Warrington closed out an outstanding regular season with nine strikeouts in six innings of work to improve to 7-0 on the year. In the nightcap, neither team scored after the third inning until a walk-off double in the bottom of the ninth for the Chargers (15-33, 11-14 CACC) ended the game.
The Wildcats (27-19, 18-6 CACC) used the long ball in the opening game to get a jump on Dominican.
In the top of the second, the Wildcats used back-to-back-to-back dingers to take a 3-0 lead. Nick Nocella led off the inning with a homer to right center and then Eddie Parry followed with a homer to left. Shawn Haut stepped in and did the same, launching a ball to left for the third straight home run.
With runners on second and third and one out in the third, Nick Nocella singled in another run before Eddie Parry hit a sacrifice fly to make it 5-0 after three innings.
Erik Grady started the fifth with a double and then he was brought home by a Tyler Pirrung RBI single. Jack McDonald doubled to restart the inning, and Nocella added another RBI with a sacrifice fly to right, plating Pirrung for the 7-0 lead.
After a one-out single in the bottom of the first, Matt Warrington sat down the next 12 Chargers before a one-out single in the fifth. He turned the ball over to Rich Albrecht for the seventh, and after the Chargers loaded the bases with no outs, he induced a ground ball, a strikeout, and a grounder back to the mound to only allow two runs and close the game.
A leadoff walk in the bottom of the first came around to score for Dominican off starter Matt Boyko, but the Wildcats had an answer in the top of the second.
Nick Nocella started the second with a single up the middle. He tied the game when he came home on a Zach Czarnecki fielder's choice.
Nic Hertzfeld gave the Wildcats the 2-1 lead in the top of the third, hitting the fourth homer of the day for the Wildcats, a solo shot to right. But the Chargers answered in the bottom of the third, tying the game with a two-out RBI single.
The Wildcats left a runner on third base in the fourth and eighth innings but never came up with the big two-out hit. Adrian Jimenez started the top of the ninth with a single and moved up to second on a sacrifice bunt. Jimenez was standing at third with one out after a passed ball, but a strikeout, a walk, and a fly out to right ended the inning with the game still tied, 2-2.
Dominican acted on a one-out walk in the bottom of the ninth, as a stolen base and a double to right center won the game for the home team, 3-2.
Matt Boyko started and went 3.0 innings, allowing two runs on three hits and three walks. Tyler Reinert pitched two scoreless innings with three strikeouts before Tyler Brown pitched a scoreless sixth inning. Dom Grady struck out three in 2.0 innings of work before Justin Barcoski took over in the ninth.
The Wildcats won the CACC South Division, so they earned a bye into the double-elimination portion of the CACC Tournament next weekend hosted by Post University in Waterbury, Conn. They will play the winner of the Felician and Bloomfield series on Thursday, May 11, at 2:00 p.m.