Broncos fall to the Titans

Wednesday afternoon in from of an estimated 102 fans at Hyames field, the Western Michigan University Broncos fell to the University of Detroit Titans 5-4. With game time temperatures in the 50's and an overcast sky threatening to bring rain, the Broncos were hoping to begin their final road trip of the season on a winning streak.

Despite being held hitless until the fourth inning the Broncos were able to get on the board first in the third inning. Ben Myers and R.C. Dickerson led of the inning by both being hit by an Adam Myers pitch. Myers and Dickerson were moved up when Adam Rosales laid a perfect sacrifice punt to the pitcher. Myers scored on a sacrifice fly to leftfield to give the Broncos a 1-0 lead.

The Broncos added another run in the fourth inning. After Chad Tarpley led off by hitting a pop-up to the shortstop Jarrett Juergensen singled to right. Tony Scheffler grounded to the second baseman but reached safely when Jason Chapieski mishandled the ball. Steve Horn moved the runners up with a single to right field. Juergensen scored when Ben Myers grounded out to the second baseman.

By the end of the Titans half of the fifth inning not only had the Titans erased the Broncos 2 run lead, they had a 2 run lead of their own. The Titans ended up sending ten men to the plate in the inning. Alex Martin led off with a single to right field and moved to second on a sacrifice bunt by Brian Wilson. Joe Kotowski drove in Martin with a single to center field. Jason Chapieski followed with a single to center field. Kotowski came in to score Roger Wechter singled to right field. After walking Tim Poley to load the bases starter Shawn Morrison was pulled for Charlie Christner. Christner then walked the first two guys he faced J.D. Leichtman and Dustin Wiley allowing Chapieski and Wechter to score. Martin who started the inning with a single flied out to right field to end the inning.

The Titans added another run to their lead in the eighth inning. With one out Martin doubled to centerfield. Following a strikeout by Brian Wilson, Kotowski singled off of a Clark Sterley pitch. The run proved to be enough for the Titans.

The Broncos pulled to within 2 runs in the bottom half of the eighth inning when Coach Decker decided to go to his bench and had Kevin Kross lead off. The Titans brought in relief pitcher Omar Diaz and Kross greeted him by slamming a Diaz pitch over the fence in deep centerfield.

After a Titan threat was stopped in the ninth inning by Zach Straayer, the Broncos went to work to try to take the game into extra inning or win the game in the bottom of the ninth inning. Matt Bolton led of the inning with a pinch hit single and was replace by Orlando Colon as a pinch runner. Colon was erased on a fielder's choice play off of the bat of Adam Rosales. Mark Abro then hit a shot to the third baseman who bobbled the ball and fell to the ground in the process. In a play where the first baseman's foot was clearly off and away from the bag, Abro was called out. While Coach Decker raced to the umpire to argue the call, Abro had already been ejected from the game for arguing. Coach Decker later said that it was one of the worst calls he has seen made. Tom Fabrizio then walked and Chad Tarpley drove in Rosales to bring the Broncos to within one run. Kross then struck out to end the game. Morrison took the loss, his fourth of the season.

The Broncos (23-22, 15-9 MAC) now travel to Wright State for a two game series this weekend. The Broncos then travel to Northwestern on May 13th and close out their regular season with a four game series at Hyames field against Ball State on May 16, 17 and 18.

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