Baseball's fourth-years pull through one last time
On the road for the last day of the season, baseball returned to what it did best all year: hitting the hell out of the ball.
The Maroons (24--13), owning the nation's second most-productive offense before Saturday with 10.6 runs per game, exploded for 27 runs on the back of its graduating class. These fourth-years have not been strangers to success; their sweep of Trinity Christian (9-25) on Saturday gave them claim to the three best seasons in Chicago history (26, 25, and 24 wins).
In the first game, Chicago scored two runs in the first, before putting the game away for good with eight two-out runs in the third inning. Fourth-year leftfielder Jim Raptis hit a double in each of those innings to give him 16 for the season, a new school record. Fourth-year second baseman Ben McCown also got into the mix, hitting a sacrifice fly to right field in the first inning for his 50th RBI of the season.
Working with a 10-0 lead, third-year Matt Altomare continued his recent hot streak against the Trolls. He completed the five-inning game, called due to the slaughter rule, scattering four hits and two walks in his second shutout of the season.
Game two was more of the same from the lineup with both Raptis and fourth-year third baseman Nick Kocinski earning their 61st hits of the season to tie Mark Mosier's 1996 record. Raptis went 3-4 with another RBI and two runs, and Kocinski went 5-5 with two doubles and five RBI.
In the top of the seventh inning, the Maroons went on a run that will make for some great parting memories for the fourth-years. Tracie Neubrand, Raptis, Kocinski, and McCown came up to bat and got a single, walk, single, and single in their final Chicago plate appearances. It was a fitting end for a group of players that have been doing well all year long.