The UW-Parkside baseball team took down its second ranked opponent of the season Tuesday, as Justin Bennett’s go-ahead grand slam keyed the Rangers to a 7-3 non-conference win in the first game of a doubleheader at Illinois Springfield.
The Prairie Stars, ranked fourth in the latest NCAA Division II coaches poll, won the second game, 14-3.
The Rangers, who improved to 3-8, defeated then-No. 13 Southern Indiana on March 2.
In the first game Tuesday, Bennett drove in Tremper graduate Hunter Weddel with a base hit in the top of the second to make it 1-0.
Springfield scored three runs in the bottom of the fifth before the Rangers erupted for five runs in the sixth.
Casey Oliver singled and scored on Domenic Esposito’s RBI base hit to center, then back-to-back walks loaded the bases. Up came Bennett, who belted Parkside’s first grand slam of the season for a 6-3 lead.
Weddel scored Oliver with a sacrifice fly in the top of the seventh for a 7-3 advantage.
On the mound, meanwhile, Peyton Schneider twirled a seven-inning complete game with eight strikeouts. The three runs tied the second-lowest scoring output of the season for the Prairie Stars (11-1-2), who are averaging more than 10 runs per game.
Springfield had its more usual run output in a sloppy second game Tuesday, as the teams combined for 10 errors.
The Prairie Stars scored six unanswered runs to go ahead 8-1 and added five more in the bottom of the eighth. Nicholas Rana was charged with the loss after he surrendered eight runs (five earned) on eight hits with three strikeouts in 51/3 innings.
The teams wrap up their three-game set at 10 a.m. today.
Szun, Guercio honored
Carthage’s Andy Szun and North Central’s Jacob Ray were selected as the College Conference of Illinois and Wisconsin Men’s Lacrosse Players of the Week on Monday.
Szun, a senior from Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada, broke a school record for career points last week. The attacker finished with a goal and three assists in a 12-11 loss at Rhodes on March 5, six goals and three assists in a 14-9 win at Huntingdon on March 7 and three goals in a 12-11 victory at Birmingham-Southern on March 9.
Last year, Szun set a single-season CCIW record with 75 goals.
In softball, Carthage’s Stefanie Guerio was named the CCIW Pitcher of the Week on Tuesday.
It was the second straight week Guercio has won the award.
The junior from Park Ridge, Ill., went 3-0 with a 0.00 ERA last week. In 16 total innings of work, Guercio gave up six hits and five walks and struck out 27.
Men’s v-ball still No. 1
The Carthage men’s volleyball team tightened its grip on the No. 1 ranking in the latest American Volleyball Coaches Association NCAA Division III poll, released Tuesday.
The Red Men (15-1 overall, 2-0 Midwest Collegiate Volleyball League) received 343 points and 19 first-place votes, up from last week’s 338 points and 17 first-place votes.
Carthage achieved its the No. 1 ranking last week for the first time since April 10, 2012, and broke Springfield’s 37-week run at No. 1, the longest in the history of the coaches poll.
The Red Men, who have won eight straight matches, return from a nine-day break with an MCVL match at Greenville (Ill.) 7 p.m. Friday.
Mike Johnson and