CARY, N.C. -- In yet another one-run game, Catawba's first-ever appearance at the NCAA Division II Baseball National Championship came to an end Thursday night with a 2-1 setback to West Chester in the semifinal round.
Catawba's Nick Lomascolo (Mooresville, NC/Lake Norman HS) threw into the ninth on three days rest, but West Chester was able to push across the winning run on Josh Heyne's sacrifice fly in the ninth to claim the one-run win. All four of Catawba's World Series games were decided by a single run.
Justin Lamborn doubled to open the West Chester ninth and went to third on a pop up bunt by Matt Baer that fell just out of reach of a diving Lomascolo on the third base line. After an intentional walk, John Tuttle (Kannapolis, NC/A.L. Brown HS) entered the game, but Heyne was able to slice a ball into left center to score pinch runner Dylan Zigmon with the game-winner.
Catawba had taken the early lead in the fifth. Julio Zubillaga (China Grove, NC/Carson HS) drew a one-out walk and went to third on a hit-and-run single by Brett Underwood (Greensboro, NC/SW Guilford HS). Greg Lawson (Charlotte, NC/Providence HS) put down a perfect squeeze bunt to score Zubillaga.
The Indians left five runners on over the first five innings, including four in scoring position.
West Chester pushed across the tying run in the sixth. Mike Raimo led off with a double and reached third on a sacrifice. He would score on a sacrifice fly by Joe Wendle. Both teams managed just six hits in the game.
West Chester's Fred Breidenbach won the pitcher's duel with a complete game effort. He walked two and fanned six in improving to 9-2. Lomascolo fell to 10-5 after making his school-record 18th start of the season. The junior lefty walked three (two intentionally) and struck out four over eight frames. Ryan Bostian (Kannapolis, NC/S. Rowan HS/Montreat) led the Indians at the plate as he went 3-for-4 with a pair of doubles in his final collegiate game.
- Courtesy Catawba Media Relations