CHILLICOTHE, Ohio -- The 10th-ranked Wooster Scots advanced to the winner's bracket semifinal of the 2017 North Coast Athletic Conference Baseball Tournament following a 10-2 victory over No. 24 Denison on Thursday afternoon at VA Memorial Stadium.
Wooster jumped out to an early 1-0 lead after Jake Fling blasted a one-out home to left. The Big Red would respond in the second. Freshman Brian McAuliffe opened the frame by drawing a four-pitch walk. With one down, junior Noah Hahn ripped a base hit through the right side that moved McAuliffe to third. Senior Tucker Davison followed with a single to center that scored McAuliffe.
A pair of third-inning doubles by Chandler Dippman and Fling gave the Scots a 3-1 advantage. Wooster added another run in the fourth, extending their lead to three. Senior Evan Flax pulled DU to within two with a base hit up the middle that scored freshman Vince Walker from second. Wooster added two more runs in the home half of the sixth before a four-run eighth set the final score at 10-2.
In addition to a 10-run, 11-hit offensive performance, the Scots also turned five double plays which included one that brought the game to an end. Drew Tornow went 3-for-4 with a run scored, while Fling had a double, a homer, two RBIs and two runs scored. Michael Houdek picked up the win after giving up two runs on five hits in six innings of work. Houdek struck out three and walked five while inducing four double-play balls.
Hahn paced the Denison offense with two hits, while McAuliffe reached base three times by way of a single and two walks. Eric Zmuda also drew three free passes. Perley Provost (4-4) took the loss after allowing six runs on nine hits with two Ks in 5.1 innings.
The Big Red (29-11) will return to Chillicothe, Ohio on Friday to play in the first elimination game of the 2017 NCAC Tournament. Denison will take on the loser of the DePauw/Oberlin game at 4 p.m.