RIVERSIDE, Calif. --- Bobby Wassman went seven strong innings, and Ray Santiago had two hits including what turned out to be the game-winning RBI single in the sixth to lift third-seed College of Idaho to a 4-2 win over Huntington (Ind.) in the first elimination game of the 2010 NAIA Baseball
National Championship Opening Round Wednesday morning.
The five-team group is being hosted by California Baptist University and is one of nine opening round groupings around the country.
The Yotes improve to 38-15 with the win and move on to face Vanguard in another elimination game later Wednesday at 3 p.m.
The Foresters’ season comes to an end at 31-22.
Though he scattered 12 hits, Wassman (7-3) only surrendered two earned runs, both coming on solo home runs. He walked one and struck out three and got several big inning-ending outs to end Huntington threats.
The Foresters had a hit in every inning but stranded 13 runners. They had two on in the first, third, sixth and eighth, leaving leading-hitter Andrew Drummond in the on-deck circle with the tying-run on second in the eighth. They got the tying run to the plate with no outs in the eighth and ninth but couldn’t convert.
Meanwhile, the Yotes took advantage of their opportunities, getting a pair of two-out singles in the sixth to open up a 4-1 margin.
“We made adjustments earlier than we did yesterday and had some clutch two-out hits,” said College of Idaho Head Coach Shawn Humberger. “That was the difference in the game.”
Ethan Tribolet (5-3) went the distance for the Foresters, giving up 10 hits and four runs while striking out four.
Isaac Garsez, Diego Robles and Jared Arehart also had two hits apiece for the Yotes. Garsez hit a two-out triple in the third and scored on a single by Robles to plate the game’s first run. The Yotes added another in the fourth on a sacrifice fly by Jye Lanphere.
Huntington cut into the deficit in the fifth on a solo shot by Drummond before Santiago and Jordan Lanman hit consecutive two-out RBI singles through the infield to put the margin up to 4-1.
Eric Harping hit a solo homer in the seventh to cut the deficit in half, but the Foresters couldn’t take advantage of their remaining opportunities.
Drummond, Harping and Jarod Hammel all had three hits apiece for Huntington.