Ruiz’s One-Hitter Leads WPU to Split Against Clarke

William Penn University Athletics

William Penn University Athletics

Dubuque–Josh Ruiz (Jr., Chula Vista, Calif., General Mathematics) was just three outs away from a no-hitter and even though he did not accomplish the impressive feat, his performance guided the Statesmen baseball team to a Midwest Collegiate Conference doubleheader split with Clarke Saturday.

The Statesmen (20-12, 7-7 MCC) won the opener 1-0, but fell in the nightcap 14-6.

A baseball purist’s dream, the first game featured just four hits (WPU 3-1) and was scoreless through six frames. The first and only run was manufactured the hard way as pinch hitter Brian Williams (Sr., Los Angeles, Calif., Physical Education) led off the seventh with a single. He advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt and got to third on a single.

The senior may have been stranded 90 feet away, but he took advantage of a wild pitch and touched home plate safely.

Ruiz only allowed one base runner in the first six innings with a hit-by-pitch, but could not keep the no-no intact in permitting a leadoff single. Following a sacrifice to put the tying runner at second, he retired the final two Crusaders to improve to 4-0. The junior struck out seven batters in the win.

Nick Perez (So., Greeley, Colo., Physical Education) paced the offense with a 2-for-3 outing.

Unfortunately, the second contest was completely opposite of the first with Clarke holding a 16-7 edge in hits. The home team scored the first 14 runs of the game, including seven in the fifth frame.

William Penn tried to rally, getting six runs in the sixth, but it was much too little to secure the sweep. It was an ugly inning as the navy and gold only tallied one hit, but drew three walks and were hit by pitch twice.

William Vazquez (Fr., North Hollywood, Calif., General Accounting) was 2-for-2 (one walk), while Kyle Mauricio (Sr., Ardene Hills, Minn., Physical Education) (2-for-4) also had two base knocks. Sho Serrano (Jr., Lancaster, Calif., Physical Education) walked twice in the nightcap and Perez had a hit and a walk.

Jon Davis (Jr., Hayward, Calif., Undecided), who is now 1-2, and Matt Vasquez (Jr., Lancaster, Calif., Business Management) both struggled on the mound.

Next: Weather permitting, William Penn will meet up with Clarke again on Sunday in another doubleheader that begins at noon.

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