Bearcats Beat Whitman 22-2 in Game One Behind Stalker's Five RBI; Whitman Rebounds to Win Game Two, 6-4

WALLA, WALLA, WA - Kyle Stalker drove in five runs and the Bearcats scored eleven runs in the top of the ninth inning as they blasted Whitman 22-2 in the first game of a doubleheader. But Whitman came back to win its first Northwest Conference game of the season, 6-4, in the nightcap.

The split gives the Bearcats a 15-17 record overall, 10-13 in the NWC. Whitman goes to 3-27, 1-16 NWC.

Willamette scored in each of the first six innings to take an 11-2 lead, and then blew the game open with the ninth inning outburst, highlighted by Stalker's grand slam. The freshman DH went 4-6 with three runs scored to go along with his five RBI.

Lee Eklund went 3-3 and scored four runs and Matt Johnson added three RBI to go along with two hits, Kelly Gilmore, Sean Anderson and Ellis Webster all had two hits as the Bearcats pounded out 19 hits and amassed 21 RBI in the game.

Steve Johnson pitched seven innings of 2-hit ball for the victory, giving up only one earned run. Jarrid Summers and Adam Beebe each pitched an inning of scoreless relief for the Bearcats.

Willamette could have used a few of those runs in game two. After Whitman took a 3-0 lead in the fifth inning, the Bearcats rebounded with four runs in the top of the seventh to take the lead. But the Missionaries scored three times in the bottom of the eighth to record their first conference win of the season against 16 losses.

Adam Holden led off the Bearcat's four-run rally with a walk, then moved to second on a ground out. Gilmore doubled home Holden. After a walk to David Tufo and a fielder's choice, Stalker blasted a three-run home run and the Bearcats took the lead.

But Whitman came back, taking the lead on a two-run single by Phillips. Willamette went out in order in the ninth, setting up the rubber game of the series Saturday afternoon.