FHSU Sports Information Department

TOPEKA, Kan. – The Fort Hays State baseball team was unable to hold on to an early lead Tuesday afternoon (March 28) against Washburn, falling to the Ichabods 10-5. The Tigers picked up eight hits in the contest, including four base knocks in a three-run fourth inning. But WU rallied for seven runs over the next three frames to take back control.

Fort Hays State dips to 8-19 this season and 1-13 in the MIAA, while the Ichabods improve to 17-11 overall and 9-8 in the league. The teams will wrap up their season series next Tuesday (April 4) at Larks Park.

The Tigers jumped out early, scoring in the first inning after Ty Redington led things off with a single to left. Nick Hammeke worked a walk in the next at-bat before the pair pulled off a double steal, putting runners in scoring position for Dayton Pomeroy. The DH came through with a RBI groundout, giving the Tigers a quick 1-0 lead.

Washburn responded by manufacturing a run of their own in the bottom of the first before starting pitchers Alex Ruxlow and Quentin McGrath traded scoreless frames through the third inning.

The Black and Gold broke through again in the top of the fourth, rattling off four-straight hits and taking a 4-1 lead. Jake Lanferman singled past the second baseman with one out before moving to third on a single from catcher Trevor Hughes. Bryce Witchurch followed with his first of three hits, doubling home Lanferman for the first run of the inning. Jace Bowman kept things rolling with a single to left, plating Hughes. Witchurch came in to score the final run of the inning on a fielder’s choice groundout off the bat of Redington.

The Ichabods got one run back in the bottom of the fourth before plating four in the fifth inning and two more in the sixth and eighth, taking the lead for good.

Witchurch led off the top of the ninth with a home run to right to lead off the top of the ninth inning, wrapping up a strong day at the plate. It was the junior’s third long ball of the season and his second against WU.

Witchurch picked up the only two extra base hits for the Tigers, finishing 3-for-4 and a triple shy of the cycle. Redington added a pair of hits, with Lanferman, Hughes, and Bowman contributing the other three. Ruxlow (3-5) took the loss after giving up five runs in four-plus innings of work. Ryan Ruder came on to throw 1.2 innings out of the pen, surrendering three runs on four hits with one strikeout. Sam Capps finished things off, tossing the final 2.1 innings and giving up two runs while striking out three Ichabod batters.

The Tigers will stay out on the road this weekend, traveling to Tahlequah, Okla. to take on Northeastern State in a three-game set (March 31-April 2). First pitch Friday is tentatively set for 2 p.m. Stay tuned to fhsuathletics.com and @fhsuathletics on Twitter for any schedule changes.

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