UTICA, Mich. -- The Lawrence Technological (Mich.) University baseball team closed the weekend series with a thrilling 6-5 walkoff win over Trinity International (Ill.) University on Saturday night at Jimmy John's Field in Utica, Mich. They won the opening game 13-3 to earn the three-game sweep of the Trojans. The Blue Devils are off to their best start in program history with seven straight win to open the season.
Jackson Walkowiak (SO/Grosse Pointe, MI) sealed the comeback with an RBI double to right field to score pinch-runner Logan Grizzell (JR/Colorado Springs, Colo.) and give Lawrence Tech (7-0) the 6-5 win. The Blue Devils entered the bottom of the 11th trailing Trinity International 5-4, but Max Cadman (JR/Hartland, Mich.) scored Luke Bushey(FR/Frankenmuth, Mich.) to tie the game at five. Walkowiak followed with his RBI double to seal the 6-0 start to the 2018-19 season.
Sam Brace (JR/Metamora, Ill.) started the game on the mound for Lawrence Tech and went five innings allowing three runs on six hits with six strikeouts and five walks. The Trojans scored one run in the second inning to take an early 1-0 lead and added two more in the top of the fifth inning.
The Blue Devils answered TIU with three runs in the bottom of the fifth to tie the game at 3-3. Ryan Robinette (JR/Midland, Mich.) opened the inning with a single to left followed by a single from Luke Lambert (JR/Grand Rapids, Mich.) to put runners on first and second with no outs. Nick Allen (FR/Macomb, Mich.) made it a two-run game with an RBI double to score Robinette. Walkowiak walked after Allen's hit to load the bases and Eddie Dopkowski(SO/Romeo, MI) scored pinch-runner Adam Mansfield (SO/Auburn Hills, Mich.) to make it a 3-2 game. Sean Fannon (JR/Grosse Pointe, Mich.) followed with an RBI single that tied the game at 3-3.
Kyle Wolter (JR/Canton, Mich.) entered the game in the top of the sixth inning for Lawrence Tech, going 1.1 inning with two strikeouts, but allowed three hits and a run. Down 4-3 in the bottom of the sixth, the Blue Devils' Max Mohring (SO/Bloomfield, MI) tied the game at 4-4 when he scored Robinette on a sacrifice fly to left field.
David Klug (JR/Traverse City, Mich.) entered the game in the seventh inning with one out and pitched 2.2 scoreless innings, striking out five while allowing just one hit. Jay Gallant(FR/Saginaw, Mich.) earned the win, going two innings with two strikeouts while allowing three hits and a run. It is his first collegiate win in his second appearance as a Blue Devil.
Robinette finished the game 3-for-6 with two RBIs while Dopkowski went 2-for-4 with an RBI and a walk. Fannon earned the game-tying RBI while Walkowiak went 2-for-3 with the game-winning RBI.
In the opening game, Lawrence Tech started Caleb Homan (JR/Strongsville, Ohio) on the mound and he got early run support as the Blue Devils put three runs on the board in the bottom of the first inning. Lawrence Tech used three straight walks to score their first twos runs as Fannon walked to load the bases, Logan Barker (SO/Chatham, VA) walked to score Dopkowski and make it 1-0 and Brian Corbett (JR/Miamisburg, Ohio) walked to score Tyler Childs (JR/Burt, Mich.) and give LTU a two-run lead. Bushey made it 3-0 on a sac fly to plate Fannon.
The Blue Devils gave up three runs in the top of the second inning, but retook the lead in the bottom half of the inning, scoring four runs to go up 7-3. They finished the inning with three stolen bases, two from Fannon and one from Tyler Cleasby (JR/Commerce, Mich.). Lawrence Tech finished the game with 10 stolen bases.
Homan settled back in and got through the third and fourth facing just seven batters as the Blue Devils offense added five more runs over those innings to take a 12-3 lead in the fifth inning. Lawrence Tech made it 13-3 with a bases loaded walk to Andrew Nepjuk (FR/Lake Orion, Mich.) to win the game for the Blue Devils. Gallant earned his first collegiate appearance, working one innings with one strikeout.
Barker finished the game 2-for-2 with three RBIs and two walks while Fannon went 2-for-2 with two stolen bases, two RBIs, two runs scored, and a walk. Childs went 3-for-4 with two stolen bases, an RBI, and a run scored. Homan earned the win for Lawrence Tech, he is now 2-0 with a 1.64 ERA on the season.
Lawrence Tech is back on diamond Saturday, October 6 when they begin a four-game series with University of Miami - Hamilton. Game one starts at 1 p.m. with game two to follow. Sunday's games start at 1 p.m. All games to be played at Jimmy John's Field in Utica, Mich.