Bartels hits game-winner in 13th against WBC

SALEM — Andy Bartels hit a single deep into the left-center field gap, scoring Ken Halpin from second base to led Willamette (6-7) to a 9-8 non-conference baseball victory over Western Baptist (9-4) in 13 innings.

Halpin opened the bottom of the 13th with a sharp single up the middle. After Drew Ecklund lined out to center field, Colin Griffin advanced Halpin to second base by grounding out, setting the stage for Bartels.

The result made a winner out of Willamette reliever Chris Murrell (1-0), who allowed just one hit in the top of the 13th inning. He came in for Brian Gilmore, who hurled no-hit ball from the ninth through 12th innings. WBC’s Nate Mayben (1-2) picked up the loss.

Western posted five runs in the third inning to take a commanding 7-1 lead before the Bearcats clawed their way back. WU scored two runs in the third and fifth innings to close to within 7-5, and the score was 8-7 heading into the ninth inning.

After Gilmore set down the Warriors in order, WU came up with the game-tying run. Griffin hit a bloop double down the left field line and Bartels followed with his fourth walk of the day. Matt Drahn flied out to right, advancing Griffin to third. Mike Allen then hit a deep sacrifice fly to center field, plating Griffin.

Western Baptist nearly took the lead in the top of the 13th. With Rob Bovey on third, K.C. Rumrey hit a fly ball to center field that Ecklund caught on the warning track.

Willamette was led on offense by Griffin, who went 4 for 7 on the day with three runs scored. Ecklund went 3 for 7 and scored twice. WBC was led by Rumrey, who went 3 for 7 with two runs.