College of Wooster baseball starts Florida road trip strong

The College of Wooster logo
The College of Wooster logo

PORT CHARLOTTE, Florida — Strong starting pitching and timely defense supplemented an offense that averaged 11.8 runs per game over the first half of The College of Wooster baseball team’s spring trip to Florida. Wooster went 4-1 over the first five games at Centennial Park.

Senior Mitchell Reardon (1-1) was flat-out dominant on the trip’s opening night, firing six innings of one-hit shutout baseball during Wooster’s (5-2) 11-2 win over Sewanee: The University of the South. Reardon struck out a career-high 10 batters in the Saturday night victory, including two in the first and two more in the second. Reardon carried a no-hitter into the fifth inning before Ben Harper broke it up with a two-out single.

Wooster hung a three-spot on Sewanee’s Hayden Swisher (0-3) in the first inning, then blew the game wide open with a four-run second. Junior first baseman Dane Camphausen and junior third baseman Dean Brown laced two-run singles in the second for the big knocks in the game. In the seventh, senior right fielder Ben Hines upped the lead to 11-0 courtesy of a two-run double.

Senior Colin Springer (2-0) followed Reardon’s outing with six innings of two-hit shutout ball during Wooster’s 13-1 rout of Saint John’s University (Minnesota) on Sunday. The right-hander was aided by an inning-ending double play in the third, and he retired the last seven batters faced.

An eight-run third had Wooster in the driver’s seat, and after that frame, it was already a 10-0 game. Senior designated hitter Alex Gasper plated a pair with a one-out single, and St. John’s second error of the inning led to three more runs. Two of those came on senior shortstop Tyler Chumita’s double.

Babson University, which advanced to the Div. III World Series in the last pre-COVID season, upended Wooster 5-4 in 11 innings on Monday. Andrew Dembowski walked off the Scots with a bases-loaded, one-out single.

Wooster took a 4-2 lead in the fifth. Senior center fielder Ben Gbur’s double plated senior left fielder Dominic Stilliana, who reached on a walk, and advanced to second on a balk that scored senior catcher Michael Thomas. Hines followed with an RBI single that brought in Gbur before Babson’s bullpen took over and worked 6 2/3 innings of scoreless baseball.

Gbur (0-1) took the loss, allowing an unearned run in three innings of relief. He came on in the eighth in what marked the senior’s first appearance on the bump since 2019.

Sophomore Eli Westrick allowed four runs on nine hits in 5 2/3 innings in his first collegiate start at pitcher.

First-year Nick Pett debuted as a pinch hitter in Wooster’s 12-3 win over Arcadia University on Tuesday and went 3-for-3 with three runs scored and an RBI. Four other hitters had multi-hit afternoons in the nine-run win. Wooster jumped on Arcadia’s Hunter Curley (1-1) with a three-run first. Camphausen’s two-run double fueled the offense. Later, Chumita motored around the bases for a run-scoring triple during the Scots’ three-run eighth.

Senior Dylan Carr made his first collegiate start on the mound and allowed three runs on eight hits in 4 1/3 innings. Wooster’s defense aided the pitch-to-contact specialist with double plays in the first and fourth innings, while the Scots had a third twin-killer in the seventh.

First-year Alex Gerdenich (1-0) picked up his first collegiate win with 1 2/3 innings of scoreless relief, while sophomore Ethan Samangy and junior Ryan Sullivan combined for three innings of one-hit shutout ball out of the pen.

A power surge carried Wooster past Babson 19-8 on Wednesday afternoon. Camphausen lifted a two-run round-tripper out to center field in the first inning, and he clubbed a grand slam in the sixth. Gbur added a two-run shot in the fifth, while Chumita hit a three-run four-bagger in the seventh. Wooster logged five innings with multiple runs in Wednesday’s rout.

Sophomore Corey Knauf (1-0) went five innings in his first start of the year. The right-hander allowed four runs on eight hits. Pett earned the start at second, and his first collegiate start was memorable with three hits and three RBI.

Gbur hit .423 (11-of-26) with a team-leading 11 runs over the first half of the trip. Chumita (.381, 8-of-21) knocked in a team-leading 12 runs over the first five games, while Camphausen (.364, 8-of-22) was right behind at 11 RBI. Other offensive highlights included three steals each by Gbur and Hines and Chumita’s .462 on-base percentage.

Wooster’s second half of the trip includes games against fifth-ranked North Central College (Illinois) and 25th-ranked Washington & Jefferson College.

This article originally appeared on The Daily Record: College of Wooster baseball starts Florida road trip strong