KALAMAZOO, Mich. — The Central Michigan baseball program dropped its Mid-American Conference series opener at Western Michigan Thursday afternoon, 6-4.
With the loss the Chippewas fall to 10-15 in MAC play and 23-30 overall on the season, but are still alive to qualify for their 10th straight league tournament at All Pro Freight Stadium in Avon, Ohio May 22-25
The Chippewas came out looking to move up in the MAC standings and quickly struck in the top of the first inning when senior Tom Lally recorded an infield single and advanced two bases on a pair of wild pitches before scoring on a fielder’s choice RBI by senior Jordan Adams for the 1-0 lead.
The Broncos (16-36, 8-17 MAC) were able to string together three hits in the bottom of the second to take a lead they would not relinquish. Steve Buglione started the inning with a single up the middle and moved to second on a ground out before Brandon Cable drove him with a single to even the game, 1-1.
Theo Piccirilli singled later in the inning to push Cable across, giving the Broncos a 2-1 advantage. Western later extended its lead to 3-1 in the bottom of the fifth on a RBI single by Brett Sunde.
The Chippewas pulled within a run in the top of the next frame on a RBI single by freshman Dylan Goodwin, but the Broncos responded with a pair of runs to again create separation, 5-2.
Sophomore Nick Regnier walked with one out in the seventh and later scored on a wild pitch to pull CMU back within two, 5-3, but again the Broncos responded with a RBI single by Cable to extend the lead back to three, 6-3.
CMU attempted to rally in the top of the ninth down three runs and got the start they needed with a leadoff single by Lally, who later came around to score an unearned run on a Broncos’ error, but MacKenzie flew out with a pair of runners on to end the game.
Lally led the way at the plate going 2-for-4 with a pair of runs scored, while freshman Logan Regnier also had a multi-hit game finishing 2-for-5. Sophomore Jordan Foley suffered the loss for the Chippewas, giving up five runs on seven hits over 5.1 innings pitched.
The Chippewas and Broncos will resume their series tomorrow afternoon at 1 p.m.