AUBURNDALE, Fla. – The Spartans scored first but No. 4 Wisconsin Whitewater plated a single run in the third and fourth inning to come away with a tight 2-1 victory on Tuesday morning at Lake Myrtle Park.
Castleton actually out-hit the Warhawks 8-7, but the visitors left nine men on base to drop to 8-9 overall. UWW, meanwhile, improved to 9-0 with the victory.
Senior Sam Spencer was impressive on the mound, going the full 8.0 innings, while giving up seven hits, two earned runs and striking out seven batters. Classmate Taylor Vile added two hits and the team's lone run, while Dan Errico had a hit and was walked.
Mike Nompleggi came on in relief to earn the win as he threw 6.2 innings while allowing two hits with six strikeouts and no walks. Starter Curtis Morgan went 2.1 innings, giving up six hits, one run and three walks with three strikeouts.
Castleton threatened in the first inning, loading the bases. Deagan Poland was hit by a pitch and Vile followed with a single before Errico walked with one out. However, consecutive pop-ups ended the frame.
In the bottom of the second, Whitewater put runners on the corners with no outs and threatened to break open the game. Spencer responded in a big way, striking out the each of the next three batters to get out of trouble.
The Spartans broke through in the top of the third as Vile and Nick Swim led off with back-to-back singles. Following a flyout, Jim Buckley drove in Vile for a 1-0 lead. Bahan loaded the bases with another single, forcing a pitching change. Nompleggi produced strikeouts ended the inning after the pitching
In the bottom of the frame, the Warhawks responded with a run of their own to tie it 1-1. Whitewater scored with one down and then loaded the bases, poised to take the lead. Spencer settled down and struck out the final two batters of the inning to shut the door.
Whitewater took the lead an inning later, following a double, sacrifice bunt and a ground out. A groundout ended the frame one batter later to keep the score 2-1.
Castleton was unable to advance a runner past second over the final five innings, while Spencer worked out of a jam in the eighth to keep the score at just 1-0.
The Spartans return to action on Saturday when they're scheduled to host Lyndon in a doubleheader beginning at 1 pm.