Sweep of Western Michigan Puts CMU in First Place
Courtesy: Robert Barclay/CMU
Kurt Lauscher worked 6-1/3 innings to improve to 7-2 on the year.

MOUNT PLEASANT – Central Michigan University scored 10 runs in the first two innings of an 11-3 win over Western Michigan Sunday afternoon. The win completed a sweep of the Broncos and, coupled with Eastern Michigan’s 16-3 loss to Toledo, moved the Chippewas into first place in the Mid-American Conference standings.


Billy Anderson had a career-high four hits in five at-bats for the Chippewas (33-17 overall, 20-4 MAC), who completed their fifth weekend sweep against a conference opponent this season. The Chippewas will enter the regular season’s final weekend with a magic number of three: any combination of CMU wins and Eastern Michigan losses that adds up to three will clinch the MAC regular season championship.


CMU put away Sunday’s game in the early going. Sean Hoorelbeke drew a bases-loaded walk with one in the bottom of the first to open the scoring, and Bryan Mitzel followed with a two-run single that made the score 3-0.


Eight of CMU’s first nine hitters reached base in the seven-run second inning. Cody Allen and Anderson connected on back-to-back run-scoring singles, Tyler Stovall roped a two-run double off the base of the wall in left, and Hoorelbeke singled in Stovall to end WMU starter Dan Coberley’s day after just 1-1/3 innings. Mitzel welcomed reliever Drew Mahan with a run-scoring double and later scored on Noah Lankford’s sacrifice fly.


The Chippewas added an unearned run in the seventh. Eric Cannon doubled with one out, and Allen followed with an infield single. Allen beat a late throw on the play that sailed wide of first base and allowed Cannon to score from second.


CMU starter Kurt Lauscher, meanwhile, limited the Broncos (16-30, 8-13 MAC) to two runs, one earned, on six hits in 6-1/3 innings. He worked out of a bases-loaded jam in the first inning and retired 11 straight hitters at one point to improve to 7-2 on the season. Both runs charged to him came after he left the game in the seventh inning.


Allen was 3-for-4 with three singles out of the leadoff spot for CMU. Stovall was 2-for-4 with a walk, double, two runs scored and two RBI. Mitzel drove in three runs and now has 199 RBI in his career.


Coberley dropped to 4-3 for Western Michigan. He surrendered nine runs on eight hits in 1-1/3 innings. Pedro Dager was 3-for-5 in the loss.


CMU hosts Wright State Tuesday at 3 p.m. in the regular season home finale. The Chippewas close the regular season with a three-game series at Ball State beginning Thursday.