The UT Tyler Patriot baseball team must love these must-win to stay alive games.
For the third straight week the Patriots find themselves in that situation.
Shortstop Bill Munson’s three-run double keyed a big seventh-inning, rallying No. 6 Rhodes (Tennessee) to a 7-2 upset of No. 1 seed UT Tyler on Thursday during the first day of the NCAA Division III West Regional at Irwin Field.
The Patriots (39-8) now face an elimination game at 11 a.m. Friday against rival No. 5 Concordia-Texas (28-16), a 6-3 loser to No. 2 California Lutheran.
Rhodes (26-19) advances in the winner’s bracket to face either No. 3 Centenary (Louisiana) or No. 4 Linfield (Oregon) at 2:30 p.m. Friday. Cal Lutheran (32-10) plays against either Centenary or Linfield at 6 p.m.
The double-elimination tournament continues through Sunday. The winner of the regional advances to the NCAA D-III World Series May 26-31 in Appleton, Wisconsin.
The Patriots took a 2-0 lead only to see the Lynx score seven unanswered runs.
UT Tyler took a 1-0 lead in the fourth when Tim Hunter was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded, scoring Trenton Buchhorn. Hunter followed in the sixth with an RBI single to center that plated Ben Romines.
Rhodes College was limited to three hits over the first six innings by UT Tyler starter Cody Brown (10-3), but the Lynx put together a five-run inning on three hits in the seventh. The Lynx got on the board for the first time with a Levi Greenberg sacrifice fly to center before striking for three on a Munson’s double down the left-field line. Rhodes added add two more runs in the ninth on a Paul Giacomazzi RBI single through the middle of the infield with two outs.
Hunter, Gunnar Quick and Romines led the Patriots with two hits each, while Alex Bishop added the seventh hit. Hunter finished the game 2 for 2 with two walks and two RBI. He now leads the nation with 62 walks and has 19 RBIs for the Patriots.
Ryan Olive led the Lynx with a 3-for-5 day at the plate, while Munson was 2 for 4 with three RBIs and Giacomazzi went 2 for 5 with two RBIs.
Alex Garrett (3-1) got the win in relief, hurling the final 3 2/3 innings, allowing just two hits and walking one. Blake Glauben started the game, throwing 5 1/3 innings, striking out eight and walking five.
NCAA Division III Baseball
At Irwin Field
Hosted by UT Tyler
Game 1: No. 6 Rhodes (Tennessee) 7, No. 1 UT Tyler 2
Game 2: No. 2 California Lutheran 6, No. 5 Concordia-Texas 3
Game 3: No. 3 Centenary (Louisiana) 12, No. 4 Linfield (Oregon) 1
Game 4: UT Tyler (39-8) vs. Concordia-Texas (28-17), 11 a.m.
Game 5: Rhodes (26-19) vs. Linfield (Oregon) (30-12), 2:30 p.m.
Game 6: Cal Lutheran (32-10) vs. Centenary (Louisiana) (35-8), 6 p.m.
Game 7: Game 5 winner vs. Game 6 winner, 11 a.m.
Game 8: Game 4 winner vs. Game 6 loser, 2:30 p.m.
Game 9: Game 8 winner vs. Game 7 loser, 6 p.m.
Game 10: Game 7 winner vs. Game 9 winner, noon
Game 11: Game 10 winner vs. Game 10 loser, if necessary, TBA