AVON, Ohio — The good news is they have been here before.
The Central Michigan baseball program fell in the first round of the Mid-American Conference Tournament to No. 1 seed Kent State Wednesday night, 15-8.
A year ago, the Chippewas (25-31) were in a similiar position only to win four games in three days for a trip to the championship game at All-Pro Freight Stadium.
CMU will look to begin that same quest Thursday afternoon versus No. 5 seed Miami at 12:30 in an elimination game.
The Golden Flashes (35-21) struck early and struck often Wednesday night, batting around in each of the first two innings to score four in the first and five in the second.
After Kent took a 4-0 lead through one, sophomore Cody Leichman singled to lead off the second and came around to score on a triple by redshirt freshman and local Avon native Neal Jacobs for the Chippewas' first run of the contest. Jacobs scored on a wild pitch later in the inning to cut the deficit to 4-2.
Unfortunately, the Golden Flashes went right back to work, batting around for the second time in as many innings to chase sophomore Jordan Foley after just 1.1 innings and score five more runs to build their advantage to 9-2.
Senior Jordan Adams continued to show he enjoys hitting at All-Pro Freight Stadium with a solo home run and a pair of RBI hits, finishing 3-for-5 on the night.
Adams' home run came in the top of the sixth to cut the Chippewas' deficit to 12-3, but Kent State's Justin Wagler capped a five RBI day with a two-run home run to left center in the seventh to extend the lead back to 14-3.
A leadoff walk to sophomore Nick Regnier and Adams' RBI double answered the Wagler shot, but a Cody Koch home run in the bottom of the eighth pushed Kent's lead to 15-4.
The Chippewas didn't go down without first putting together a bit of a rally in the top of the ninth.
Junior Noel Santos led off the ninth with hot-shot single up the middle and freshman Morgan Oliver hit his first career home run to left field. A walk to senior Tom Lally and a single by Regnier extended the inning before Adams drove in his third run of the night with a single to left center to bring the game within eight, 15-7.
Leichman roped his fourth hit of the game to left center to drive Regnier in from second, forcing the Golden Flashes to make a pitching change, but it would be as close as the Chippewas would get.