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April 5, 2011

2011 Season - Vikings split with Illinois Wesleyan

Senior Mike Lamb made the key defensive play as Augustana came from behind to win 9-6 in the nightcap of Tuesdays' doubleheader against Illinois Wesleyan. Lamb also drove in four runs on the day, including three in the Vikings' 18-13 game one loss.

MOLINE, Ill.- Mike Lamb's (Ottawa HS, Ottawa, Ill.) sixth-inning leaping grab of a potential grand slam off the bat of Illinois Wesleyan's Kevin Callahan kept Augustana's deficit at one run and allowed the Vikings to eventually come from behind and claim a 9-6 win in the nightcap of a doubleheader Tuesday  at Swanson Stadium/Brunner Field. The Titans won the opener 18-13 in 10 innings.

Game One: Illinois Wesleyan 18, Augustana 13 (10 innings)

  The two teams combined for 39 hits in the game one shootout. Callahan's RBI double to left center gave the Titans a 1-0 lead after a half inning, but Augustana answered with three in the bottom of the second. T.J. O'Donnell (New Trier HS, Northbrook, Ill.) led off with a double and scored on Pat Wilson's (Stevenson HS, Vernon Hills, Ill.) RBI single. Lamb's double to left center scored Wilson and Kevin Serna (Rolling Meadows HS, Arlington Heights, Ill.), who had walked, to give Augustana a 3-1 lead after two innings.

 Callahan's three-run homer in the top of the third have the Titans a 4-3 lead, but the Vikings again responded, getting five in the bottom half to take an 8-4 lead. Jeremy Juhl's (Glenbard East HS, Lombard, Ill.) two-run single was the big hit.

 The fireworks continued in the fourth, with IWU scoring four to tie the game at 8-8. Josiah Martin (Canton HS, Canton, Ill.) came in with the bases loaded and fanned pinch-hitter Jon Frericks to end the inning and get the Vikings out of further trouble.

 Augustana took a 12-8 lead after five. Jared McIntosh (Assumption HS, Davenport, Iowa) lined a three-run homer to center in the fourth and after Martin set down the Titans without incident in the top of the fifth, Augustana added a run in the bottom half.

 IWU finally got to Martin for three runs in the top of the sixth. They were the first runs the Viking reliever had allowed this season and two of the three were unearned. Augustana scored for the fifth straight inning, getting a run in the bottom of the sixth on Serna's RBI triple to make it 13-11.

 The Titans tied the game with single runs in the seventh and eighth innings. Meanwhile Titan reliever Pat Hayn came on with two outs in the seventh and shut Augustana out the rest of the way, allowing IWU to finally put the game away with five runs in the top of the 10th.

 Lamb had three hits and three RBI in the contest. Juhl scored three runs and drove in a pair. Callahan had a huge game for Illinois Wesleyan, going 5-for-5 with six driven in. Hayn got the win, while Augustana freshman Matt Pisani (York HS, Elmhurst, Ill.) took the loss in his first collegiate appearance.

Game Two: Augustana 9, Illinois Wesleyan 6

  The Titans looked poised for a sweep in game two. Leading 6-5, they had the bases loaded with one out in the sixth when Viking freshman Brian Konecke (Lakes Community HS, Itasca, Ill.) came on in relief. Callahan, who had already gone 7-for-8 with eight RBI on the day, stepped to the plate and launched a shot to deep right field which Lamb scaled the wall to grab for the second out of the inning. Titan Ryan Hopp scored from third on the play, but was called out when Augustana appealed that he'd left prematurely.

 The Vikings went ahead in the bottom of the seventh. Juhl and Dave Hoffman (Cary-Grove HS, Cary, Ill.) started the frame with back-to-back singles. O'Donnell pulled a double just inside the bag at third to score Juhl with the tying run.  Wilson and McIntosh followed with RBI singles and Lamb finished the scoring with a sacrifice fly to right that delivered Wilson.

 Konecke shut the Titans out over the last 3 2/3 innings to win his first collegiate decision. Six Vikings had two hits each in the nightcap, including McIntosh and O'Donnell who also drove in three runs apiece.

 Now 14-3 on the year and 4-1 in CCIW play, the Vikings face Elmhurst in a three-game series this weekend. The two teams meet in a doubleheader at Swanson-Brunner on Saturday, April 9 at 2:00 p.m. and play in Elmhurst on Sunday.