Bourbonnais, Ill. – Sophomore left fielder Brad Myjak (Tinley Park, Ill./Mount Carmel) posted three hits and two RBI on the day, but the Saint Xavier University baseball team could not secure a victory dropping a doubleheader to Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference (CCAC) rival Olivet Nazarene University (Ill.) Saturday afternoon at Watson Field in Bourbonnais, Ill. The Cougars (34-21 overall/20-10 CCAC) came back to tie the score, 4-4, in the top of the seventh of the first game, but the Tigers walked in the game-winning run in the bottom of the frame to capture a 5-4 victory. SXU managed only three hits in the late game to fall by a score of 4-1. With Friday's 4-3 win in 10 innings at Richard R. Ferrell Memorial Field in Chicago, ONU swept the three-game conference series.
An infield error in the bottom of the first inning led to two of Olivet Nazarene's three runs in the opening frame putting Saint Xavier behind 3-0 in the early goings. A RBI single by the Tigers in the second pushed the deficit to four runs, 4-0. SXU made its move in the top of the fifth cutting ONU's lead in half with a huge swing of the bat on a two-out, two-RBI single by Myjak. Freshman pinch-hitter Bryan Villanova (Chicago, Ill./St. Laurence) got his team a little closer in the sixth with a RBI single to make it, 4-3. A RBI double by sophomore first baseman Thomas Keating (Chicago, Ill./Joliet Junior College/St. Laurence) in the top of the seventh tied the game, but back-to-back strikeouts to close out the frame left SXU runners stranded at second and third base. A walk and a hit batter put ONU's first two batters on base in the bottom of the seventh. After an intentional walk to load the bases, the game ended on another walk. Junior right-hander Lucas Fritsch (Orland Park, Ill./Sandburg) took the loss (4-2) in relief allowing three walks and the go-ahead run. Junior left-hander Mike Klett (Plainfield, Ill./Western Michigan/Plainfield North) got the start for SXU throwing six innings and giving up six hits, four runs (two earned) and five walks with four strikeouts.
The Cougars could not find its offense in the nightcap with junior catcher Tony O'Shea (Valparaiso, Ind./Mount Carmel) recording two of the team's three hits. O'Shea also scored Saint Xavier's lone run of the game. The Tigers went ahead, 2-0, in the bottom of the second off a two-RBI single with two outs. An infield error by Olivet in the top of the sixth allowed O'Shea to cross home plate to make the score, 2-1. However, ONU got the run back in the bottom of the sixth on a sacrifice bunt and put the Cougars down in order in the top of the seventh to complete the series sweep. Freshman righty Andy Kovarik (Crystal Lake, Ill./Prairie Ridge) suffered the game two loss (4-2) allowing six hits, four runs (all earned) and six walks with two strikeouts over six innings of work.
Saint Xavier (34-21 overall/20-10 CCAC) will be one of the six teams to compete next week in the 2012 CCAC Baseball Tournament. The Cougars still have not received their seed, but will kick off postseason play on Tuesday, May 1, at Oil City Stadium in Whiting, Ind. The seeds and bracket for the tournament will be released early next week.