CLAREMONT, Calif. – Freshman pitcher Simon Rosenbaum threw seven shutout innings in his first collegiate start and was 1-for-3 with two runs scored at the plate as Pomona-Pitzer defeated No. 5 Whitworth 5-0 on Sunday at Alumni Field.
Pomona-Pitzer remains perfect on the year at 4-0, after taking three games from Pacific (Ore.) to start the season this weekend, while Whitworth slips to 1-2-1 on its opening California trip. Whitworth was the NCAA West Region champion a year ago and was the preseason No. 5 team in the nation by D3baseball.com.
Rosenbaum had a nearly flawless opening weekend, as he batted 4-for-4 in his debut at the plate in the third game of the Pacific series and then threw seven innings of shutout baseball in his debut on the mound against Whitworth. He ended the weekend 5-for-7 at the plate (.714) and one of his outs came in the second inning against Whitworth when center fielder Erik Nikssarian leapt against the wall to rob him of a double to keep the game scoreless.
Pomona-Pitzer got on the board first with a pair of runs in the bottom the fourth inning. After an error started the rally, Rosenbaum singled up the middle, and junior catcher Travis Bowers walked to load the bases.
Sophomore second baseman Mark Okuma then hit a sacrifice fly to left field to score the first run, and sophomore shortstop Sam Fox followed with an RBI double to left-center to make the score 2-0.
Rosenbaum ran into minor control trouble to start the fifth by walking two batters, but a pop up on a bunt to sophomore E.J. Lopez at third turned into a double play and a ground out to Fox ended the inning with no damage done.
The Sagehens then mounted a rally in the bottom the fourth as senior left fielder Mike Moyer led off with a double off the top of the wall in right field, and senior right fielder Nick Gentili followed with a line-drive single into center. Sophomore first baseman Jake Bruml then hit a line drive to left field to score Moyer with a sacrifice fly to push the lead to 3-0.
Rosenbaum settled in and made quick work of the Pirates in the sixth and seventh, ending his day with seven innings pitched, three hits, three strikeouts and no runs. Junior Drew Helgren retired the side in the eighth with help of a 6-4-3 double play to Fox at shortstop
The Sagehens added two insurance runs in the eighth as Rosenbaum was hit by a pitch, and came home on an error. Senior center fielder Erik Munzer tacked on an RBI single to make the score 5-0. Helgren finished off the save in the bottom of the ninth with a 1-2-3 inning, completing two innings of work by throwing to six batters and allowing one hit.
Moyer was the lone Sagehen to have a multi-hit game, finishing 2-for-4 with a run scored. Josh Davis was 2-for-4 for Whitworth, accounting for half of the Pirate hits.
Pomona-Pitzer will be back in action next weekend, when it opens SCIAC play with a three-game series against Claremont-Mudd-Scripps.