KALAMAZOO, Mich. -- It took a season high for runs scored and two days to complete, but the Ohio baseball team (20-21, 6-8 MAC) earned a 17-13 marathon win in come-from-behind fashion over Mid-American Conference West Division foe Western Michigan (17-20, 7-10 MAC) at Robert J. Bobb Stadium at Hyames Field.
The Bobcats evened the weekend series with the Broncos after dropping a 3-2 walk-off decision to the Broncos in game of a Friday (April 28) doubleheader.
Ohio led the second game of the twin bill, 15-12, in the top of the eighth inning when the contest was called due to darkness Friday night. The Bobcats wrapped up the win on Saturday (April 29) morning.
The Green & White pounded out 17 runs on 17 hits and saw five players record multi-hit efforts.
Freshman left fielder Tanner Piechnick (Canonsburg, Pa.) enjoyed a breakout performance at the plate, going a career-best 4-for-5 with a pair of doubles, two walks, two RBIs and five runs scored.
Senior center fielder Spencer Ibarra (Fort Collins, Colo.) put together another big game from the leadoff spot, finishing 3-for-5 with three RBIs and three runs scored. He has now tallied a team-high 17 multi-hit games and seven multi-RBI efforts.
Junior right fielder Tony Giannini (Carmel, Ind.) went 2-for-5 with his first home run of the 2017 season. He also walked twice and recorded two RBIs and two runs scored.
Senior third baseman Connor Callery (Covington, Ky.) and senior catcher Anthony Mrosla (Coon Rapids, Minn.) each recorded a pair of singles. Mrosla walked twice, drove in a run and scored three more while Callery drew two walks, posted an RBI and scored a run.
Ohio grabbed a 1-0 lead in the top of the first inning to open the scoring. Ibarra reached on an error to lead things off and scored two outs later on a double to left by Piechncik.
Western Michigan evened the score in the home half of the second as sophomore left fielder Nate Grys led off with a base hit to left and scored two outs later by way of a single to center by redshirt senior right fielder Tyler Frank.
The Bobcats retook the lead in the third when senior second baseman Ty Black (Waynesville, Ohio) was hit by a pitch to lead it off and then scored two outs later on a base hit to left by Mrosla.
Ohio added three more runs in the fourth to extend its lead to 5-1. Sophomore first baseman Rudy Rott (Holmen, Wis.) sent a two-out double to right field, and Black followed by drawing a walk. Piechnick then singled through the left side to bring around Rott. After Giannini drew a walk to load the bases, Callery coaxed a walk to bump home Black. Piechnick then scored the third run of the frame on a wild pitch.
The Broncos responded by scoring five runs in the bottom half of the fourth and six more in the fifth to take a 12-5 lead.
The Bobcats refused to quit, though, plating five more runs in the top of the sixth to cut Western Michigan's lead down to 12-10. Piechnick got the comeback started with a leadoff double to left center. One out later, Callery drew a walk. Mrosla then singled through the left side to load the bases with Bobcats. Piechnick and Callery both scored on an error by the Broncos that allowed senior shortstop Tyler Finkler (Olmsted Falls, Ohio) to reach base safely. Mrosla then scored by way of an infield single by Ibarra. Redshirt junior designated hitter Nick Bredeson (Bloomfield Hills, Mich.) then brought home Finkler with a double to left center. Ibarra then tagged up and scored Ohio's fifth run of the inning on a sacrifice fly to center by Rott.
Ohio grabbed the lead back from Western Michigan with a three-run seventh. Piechnick hit a leadoff single to left, setting the stage for a two-run homer to left by Giannini. Mrosla then reached on another error by the Broncos out out later. After Finkler singled to right and Ibarra was hit by a pitch to load the bases, Bredeson was hit by a pitch to bring in Mrosla and make it a 13-12 lead for the Bobcats.
The Bobcats' lead swelled to 16-12 with three more runs in the eighth. Piechnick and Giannini coaxed back-to-back walks to lead things off. Mrosla drew a walk one out later to load the bases for Ohio. A walk by Finkler allowed Piechnick to score. Giannini then scored when Ibarra reached on another Western Michigan error. Rott then drew another walk one out later to bump home Mrosla.
Ohio tacked on one last insurance score in the ninth Piechnick led off with a walk. Callery singled to right one out later, and Mrosla reached on another Western Michigan error to load the bases again. One out later, Ibarra was hit by a pitch again to allow Piechnick to score the Bobcats' final run.
Redshirt junior right-handed closer Jake Roehn (Sandwich, Ill.) threw the final three frames for Ohio to secure the victory for the Bobcats and nail down his career-high 10th save of the season, which rank as the second-most in a single season in program history. He struck out three while allowing one earned run on three hits. His 17 career saves are tied for the second-most in program history.
Senior left-handed reliever Matt Mikolajczak (New Lenox, Ill.) tossed 1.1 scoreless innings, striking out one. He was credited with the pitching win for the Bobcats, improving to 1-1 on the year.
Western Michigan came up short despite totaling 19 hits. Grys went 4-for-5 with a walk, an RBI and two runs scored. Senior second baseman Nick Vogelmeier finished 3-for-5 with an RBI and a run scored. Redshirt sophomore designed hitter Andrew Stone and junior center fielder Tanner Allison each doubled and singled while Frank and senior third baseman Grant Miller each posted a pair of singles. Miller also walked twice and scored two runs.
The Broncos utilized 10 pitchers in the loss. Junior righty Jake Bartels was tagged with the pitching defeat, falling to 2-2. He gave up three runs -- two of which were earned -- on three hits over 0.2 innings of relief.
Ohio and Western Michigan wrapped up the three-game set on Saturday afternoon.