Broncos Open Series Against Central Michigan With 6-4 Victory
KALAMAZOO, Mich.- Western Michigan took game one of its three-game series with rival Central Michigan Thursday, 6-4, at Robert J. Bobb Stadium.
Left-handed junior Steve Laudicina earned the win on the mound and right-handed senior Chris Bossenbery was clutch in late relief. Freshman RHP Gabe Berman came in to throw the ninth to earn his fifth save of the season.
Laudicina (3-9) went six and two-thirds, scattering six hits and three runs, while striking out five. He worked his way out of a number of situations, stranding 10 runners on base. Bossenbery tossed an inning and a third of hitless relief before Berman took the hill in the ninth.
The Broncos(16-36, 8-17 MAC) were in their groove offensively as well, as all nine batters reached base, with six recording hits. WMU had 12 hits overall.
Theo Piccirilli (3-for-5) and Andrew Sohn (3-for-4) each had three hits in the game, while Steve Buglione (2-for-5) and Brandon Cable (2-for-3) had two. Piccirilli doubled and drove in two runs, Sohn tripled and swiped a pair of bags. Cable also had a pair of RBIs.
After giving up a run in the first, Western Michigan responded with two runs in the bottom of the second. Buglione smacked a leadoff single and moved to second on a groundout. Cable drove in Buglione with a single up the middle. Cable later scored from second on a two-out single by Piccirilli.
In the bottom of the third Sohn tattooed a 3-2 pitch to right center for a leadoff triple, his second three-bagger of the year. WMU however, was unable to push the run across.
Laudicina loaded the bases with two outs in the top of the fifth and left them full, getting Jordan Adams to ground out to second.
Sohn got WMU started again in the fifth with a one-out single. Chippewa RHP Jordan Foley did his best to try to hold Sohn at first with a half dozen checks back to the bag and couldn’t. Sohn stole second and scored on an RBI single to left by Brett Sunde.
Central Michigan (23-30, 10-15 MAC) got a run back in the sixth and threatened to get more, only to have Laudicina shut the door again, stranding a pair of runners on base.
The Broncos put two runs on the board in the sixth to open a 5-2 lead. Piccirilli hit an RBI double down the left line with two runners on and Jared Kujawa plated the second run with a sac fly.
Laudicina exited the game with two outs and two on in the seventh. CMU got one across on a wild pitch by reliever Casey Hall. Bossenbery was then summoned from the bullpen to record the final out of the inning.
Cable hit his second RBI single in the bottom of the seventh to push WMU’s lead back to three, 6-3.
Both CMU and WMU hit into inning-ending double plays in the eighth. The Chippewas scored an unearned run on a throwing error with tow outs in the bottom of the ninth to make for a 6-4 final.
Western Michigan and Central Michigan return to Hyames Field tomorrow for game two and close out the series Saturday. Both games are scheduled for 1 p.m.