WOOSTER, Ohio – Junior Garrett Crum staked the seventh-ranked College of Wooster baseball team to a 2-0 lead with a towering opposite-field, two-run home run in the bottom of the first inning, and the Fighting Scots defense make a series of exceptional plays throughout the game as the Black & Gold turned aside DePauw University 4-3 in the North Coast Athletic Conference opener on Friday afternoon at Art Murray Field.
|Junior Garrett Crum drilled this pitch out to right field for a two-run homer in the bottom of the first inning.|
Crum was down in the count 0-2 when he drilled the pitch out to right field, and the junior was the focal point on Wooster's (10-3, 1-0 NCAC) third run of the game. In the third inning, Crum fouled off five pitches, before reaching on a fielder's choice. On the play, DePauw (2-11) shortstop CJ Yoannou tried to turn what would've been an inning-ending double play, but the throw sailed wide of first base allowing Dippman to touch home.
DePauw plated a run in the sixth to make it 3-1, but Wooster answered right back to push the lead back out to three. Junior Conner Thomson delivered the big hit via a two-out bloop double that scored junior Jacob Stuursma, who reached on a single earlier in the inning.
Senior Nanak Saran (3-1) battled the less-than-ideal conditions for pitchers by firing seven strong innings. The right-hander allowed one run on three hits while striking out five. Over his last two starts, Saran's allowed four hits in 13 innings.
In support of Saran, Dippman started the web gems with a sliding stop on a grounder in the top of the third inning. Later in the frame, Thomson showed off his cannon from behind the plate and caught Yoannou leaning too far off second base.
In the eighth inning, Thomson's arm led to a double play, with this one coming from the strikeout-throw out variety on a steal attempt.
Senior James Usher picked up his fourth save of the year. The right-hander closed out the Tigers with a one-two-three ninth inning.
Wooster and DePauw play the second game of the series at noon on Saturday.