KALAMAZOO, Mich. – The Akron baseball team claimed its weekend series at Western Michigan with a 6-1 victory on Sunday in Kalamazoo.
Senior righty Alex Loftin (3-1) tossed six innings and allowed just one unearned run to take the win on the mound. Classmate Scott Foster collected his second save of the season, hurling three innings of scoreless relief. Sophomore Brady Stewart led the UA (16-24, 9-6 Mid-American Conference) line-up with a three-hit day. Sophomore Tyler Begun and freshman Gerrad Rohan had two hits each.
"Loftin pitched very well and was backed up very nicely by Foster," first-year Akron coach Rick Rembielak said. "Western Michigan has good hitters and they both kept them from stringing together any threats. This was a big series win for us on the road."
Mike Moyer (0-2) was handed the loss after allowing five runs – none earned.
Patrick Duncan and Andrew Sohn had two hits apiece for the Broncos (17-20, 7-7).
Loftin pitched out of jams in both the third and fourth inning. WMU had runners on second and third with one out in the fourth. Zach Thoma then hit a shallow fly to right and Darius Washington gunned down Shutes at home. The Broncos had the bases loaded in the fifth, but Loftin got Shutes to tap back to the mound to end the frame.
Helped along by a Bronco error, Akron broke open a scoreless tie with a five-run fourth. The scoring started when Stewart came home on a passed ball. Stewart had walked, moved over on a sacrifice bunt and reached third on an error on Duncan at short. After Rohan popped up to foul territory for the second out of the inning, Jared Turocy singled to right center to score Samuel Trecaso – who reached on Duncan's blunder. Turocy then stole second and was driven in by Matt Rembielak. Singles by Devan Ahart and Tyler Begun loaded the bases and reliever Will Nimke walked Sam Watkins to bring in the fourth run of the inning. Stewart then capped the inning with an RBI infield single to short.
Shutes made it a 5-1 game with an RBI groundout in the sixth. Duncan scored on the play after reaching on an error by Rembielak at short.
UA added an insurance run in the ninth. Stewart doubled to lead off the inning and intentional walks to Trecaso and Turocy loaded the bases. Rembielak then reached on an error by Sohn at first, allowing Stewart to come across.
"I'm very proud of our hitters," Rembielak said. "We swung well all weekend. It was maybe the best three games all year in regards to having very good swings, which produced some very hard hit balls."
Akron plays a midweek doubleheader on Tuesday against Canisius at Canal Park. Action gets started at 3 p.m.