Marian baseball earns berth into NACC Tourney with sweep at Edgewood

Josh Gates heads back to the dugout.

MADISON, Wis. - Marian University baseball (18-20, 13-7 NACC) earned a spot in the NACC Tournament sweeping Edgewood 5-1 and 13-3 in eight innings.

The opener saw another dominant complete game start from sophomore Zachariah Sandoval (4-3) to defeat the Eagles and officially earn the tournament berth.  Sandoval only allowed six hits over his 9.0 innings of work striking out seven and only allowing one run.

The Sabres did all of their damage in the second through the third inning with a two-out single from sophomore Nick Bastien in the second inning to plate junior Travis Slywka opening the scoring.  Junior Jake Falish then brought in fellow junior Matt Nordlund after senior Micahel Pappas moved him to third in the third inning. 

Marian then broke through in the fourth inning plating three runs.  Senior Hunter Berry opened the inning by bringing in freshman Sean Meyer before Nordlund brought in Bastien with a fielder's choice.  Pappas then closed out the inning with a two-out single to score Berry.

The Eagles scored their lone run in the sixth to set the final at 5-1.

Two Sabres had multi-hit games on the offensive end led by Nordlund who finished 3-for-4 with a run scored and run driven in.

The Sabre bats then managed to score more runs than hits in game two to close out the crucial sweep.  Marian opened the game with three runs in the first inning with Nordlund bringing in Berry to open the scoring.  Pappas then drove in senior Jordan Walker with a sacrifice fly before a bases-loaded walk from Slywka brought in Nordlund.

Marian tacked on with a single from freshman Nick Dugandzic to score a run in the third before a balk in the fourth scored Bastien.  The Sabres continued to push runs in with three more in the sixth.  All of the damage came with two outs opening with a wild pitch that scored freshman Josh Gates.  Sophomore Jacob Arens then provided a clutch double to plate a pair and put Marian ahead 8-2.

Each team plated a run in the seventh with Gates driving in Slywka before the Sabres invoked the mercy-rule with a four-run eighth inning.  Once again, all of the scoring would come with two outs opening with a Berry double to plate a pair.  Junior Cole Clark then came up in a pinch-hit scenario where he roped a double down the right field to plate another pair and set the final at 13-3.

Junior Ty Peccioli (4-0) kept a perfect ledger tossing 6.0 innings only allowing three hits and striking out eight hitters.

Eight different Marian hitters recorded a hit in the game two victory with Walker, Gates and Dugandzic all having multi-hit games.

The Sabres await the results of tomorrow's doubleheader between MSOE and Benedictine to learn their seeding but will be either the No. 2 or No. 3 seed.  With an MSOE sweep, Marian would be the No. 3 seed but in all other scenarios, MU will receive the No. 2 seed.  The NACC Tournament opens Thursday, May 10 from Kapco Park.

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