OKLAHOMA CITY, OKLA. – Edwin Jimenez (Sr.-Lawrenceville, Ga.) hit a sacrifice fly in the 13th inning and Hector Acevedo (Sr.-Guaynabo, Puerto Rico) closed the door as Iowa Wesleyan College shocked the top-ranked team in the NAIA, defeating Oklahoma City University 4-3 Monday afternoon.
The Tigers got superb pitching performances from Acevedo and Jorge Martinez (Jr.-Tucson, Ariz.) and received timely hitting in the late innings and then again in extra innings. IWC came back from a 3-1 deficit in the seventh inning and notched what is undoubtedly one of the biggest baseball wins in school history, handing the perennial power Stars their first loss of the season in 19 games.
Martinez, a junior college transfer in his first year with the program, had his third straight superb start for Wesleyan, throwing 10 innings and striking out six while walking one. He allowed all three runs, including a pair in the sixth inning that gave the Stars a 3-1 lead, but kept IWC close throughout and in position to hang with the NAIA power that finished third in the NAIA World Series last year.
The Tigers rallied in the seventh with a pair of runs, as Olson and Jared Klosterboer (Jr.-Williamsburg, Iowa) both doubled, with Klosterboer’s double scoring Olson. Edder Morales (Jr.-Barquisimeto, Venezuela) then singled in the tying run to tie the game at 3-3.
The game remained that way into the 11th inning, when Acevedo took over for Martinez and survived a serious threat when OCU’s Kirk Walker hit a one-out triple but next batter Brandon Moss hit into a double play, lining out to first with the Walker getting picked off at third.
IWC finally broke through in the 13th, as Devin Smith (Sr.-Lynwood, Ill.) singled, advanced to second on an error and moved to third on a single by Frany Cruz (Sr.-Toa Baja, Puerto Rico). Jimenez then flied out to left field to score Smith and give Wesleyan the 4-3 lead. Oklahoma City had one final threat in the bottom of the 13th inning, putting a runner at third with two outs before Acevedo induced Walker into a fly out to left field to end the game.
Cruz and Jay Olson (Fr.-Agency, Iowa) both had three hits to lead IWC, while Jimenez drove in two of the four runs. Acevedo picked up the victory, throwing three shutout innings and allowing two hits while striking out two. Iowa Wesleyan is now 7-6 on the season and has so far won four of its first five games on its spring break trip.
The Tigers continue their tour through Oklahoma and Texas with a doubleheader today against Hillsdale Baptist College in Moore, Okla. at 1 p.m.
For more information regarding the IWC baseball program or any of the Tiger athletic teams, contact sports information director Adam Glatczak (319-385-6306 phone; 319-385-6384 FAX; email@example.com e-mail) or log on to IWC's athletics web site at www.iwc.edu/athletics.
Box score IWC 4 #1 OCU 3 (13 inn.)