CLEBURNE, Texas -- Trinity became just the fourth team in league history to come out of the losers bracket and rebound to finish as the last squad standing as the fourth-ranked Tigers defeated ninth-ranked Texas Lutheran, 9-3 and 6-5, on Sunday to claim the program's 12th overall SCAC Baseball Tournament title and first since 2016. Official Website l Photo Gallery | Interview w/ Trinity Head Coach Tim Scannell and Dalys Binder
Ironically, Trinity has been involved in all three of the previous times this has occured, including the last time in 2015, when the Tigers defeated Centenary twice on the Gents' home field to earn to the conference crown.
HOW IT HAPPENED
- Trinity jumped on TLU starter Dylan Murrell in the first game, plating five runs in the top of the second to take an early 5-0 lead.
- The Tigers added runs in the fifth sixth and ninth and cruised to the 9-3 first game victory. Arjun Thaker went a strong eight innings for Trinity, surrendering three runs on nine hits while walking five and striking out one. Jake Wisniewski drove in three runs on three hits, including a double, and Brannen Caraway doubled twice and drove in two more.
- In game two, Trinity took a 3-0 lead into the sixth inning, but the Bulldogs scored two in the top of the sixth and two more in the eighth to take their first lead of the afternoon at 4-3. Tyler Cauey's RBI triple down the right field line was the big blow in the eighth and the Bulldogs seemed to be poised to defend their tournament crown from a year ago.
- Trinity, however, answered in its half of the eighth with three runs to overtake the Bulldogs at 6-4. Rafe Chaumette's RBI single and Dalys Binder's two RBI single were the primary sources of production for the Tigers.
- The defending champions did not go quietly as TLU pushed across a run on two singles and a balk to close the margin to 6-5. But with the tying run at second and the go ahead run at first, the Bulldogs flied out to right to end the game.
TRINITY UNIVERSITY STATISTICAL STANDOUTS (COMBINED 2 GAMES)
- Logan Morrison: 5-9, 3 runs, 1 RBI, 2 SB
- Jake Martin: 4-9, 1 run, 1 RBI,
- Dalys Binder: 4-9, 2 runs, 2 RBI, 1 2B
- Jack Wisniewski: 3-8, 2 runs, 3 RBI, 1 2B
- Arjun Thakar: 8.0 IP, 9 H, 3 ER, 1 K, 5 BB (Game 1)
- James Nittoli: 5.1 IP, 4 H, 2 R, 1 ER, 2 K, 1 BB (Game 2)
TEXAS LUTHERAN UNIVERSITY STATISTICAL STANDOUTS
- Thomas Varner: 4-8, 1 run, 1 RBI
- Austin Colon: 4-9, 2 runs
- Cullen Motsinger: 1-6, 2 runs, 2 RBI
- Tyler Cauley: 2-8: 1 run, 1 RBI, 1 3B
- Cody Rimko: 6.0 IP, 3 ER, 3 K, 1 BB (Game 1)
- Riley Backs: 4.1 IP, 3 ER, 3 K, 1 BB (Game 2)
- Over the course of the six games they played against each other this year (three in the regular season and three in the tournament), TLU outscored Trinity by a combined one run - 34-33.
- The championship represents the 12th baseball tournament title for Trinity and the 13th overall baseball championship for the program. The Tigers were co-champions of the CAC in 1990 when the conference used a round-robin format to determine its champion.
- Sunday's championship at the Depot at Cleburne Station represents the 10th different facility where Trinity has won a SCAC title. The Tigers have won twice at their own campus and twice at USA Stadium in Millington, Tenn., and then once each at Hendrix College, Oglethorpe University, University of the Sewanee, Centre College, Southwestern University, Centenary College, Texas Lutheran and today's championship at the Depot.
- Including this year, Trinity and Texas Lutheran have combined to win six of the last seven SCAC Baseball Tournament titles. Today, however, is just the second time the two programs have met in the championship during that stretch.
- Texas Lutheran is the third straight defending champion to lose the following year in the championship round. Coming off a championship in 2016, Trinity lost to Centenary in 2017, Centenary lost the following year in the title round to Texas Lutheran, and TLU lost this year's final two championship games to Trinity.
2019 SCAC ALL-TOURNAMENT TEAM
- Colby Schmidt, Southwestern (Catcher)
- Dalys Binder, Trinity (First Baseman)
- Logan Morrison, Trinity (Second Baseman)
- Daniel Montgomery, Jr., Southwestern (Third Baseman)
- Thomas Varner, Texas Lutheran (Third Baseman)
- Jack Wisniewski, Trinity (Shortstop)
- Ethan Hallmark, Southwestern (Outfielder)
- Jake Martin, Trinity (Outfielder)
- Rafe Chaumette, Trinity (Outfielder)
- Trey Albaugh, Texas Lutheran (Designated Hitter)
- Matthew Hickey, Texas Lutheran (Pitcher)
- Ian Hussian, Trinity (Pitcher)
- James Nittoli, Trinity (Pitcher)
Trinity (34-10) earns the league's automatic bid to the NCAA playoffs and will compete in the Regionals May 17-19. The official announcement from the NCAA will be on Monday, May 13. Texas Lutheran (31-12), the league regular season co-champions along with Trinity, will await word of a possible at-large berth to the NCAA tournament. The Bulldogs were fifth in the most recent NCAA West Region rankings.