RIVER FOREST, Ill. - Senior Egan Bonde pitched 7.1 innings of five-hit ball while three players finished with two hits, but the Buena Vista University baseball team couldn't get the big hit when it needed it and fell at #2 Concordia Chicago on Friday morning to begin the NCAA Regional Tournament.
The Beavers threatened to score right out of the gate as the Cougars committed a pair of errors in the opening inning to put runners at first and second. Concordia starter Adam Gregory then got Nick Henrichs to ground all ball to short which was flipped over to second for the final out.
In the third inning, BVU had two more hits and put runners on the corners with two outs but a strikeout ended that threat. The Cougars pushed across the game's first run in the fourth when the Beavers couldn't quite finish off a double play attempt. After BVU got the second out at second base, the Cougars beat throw back to first by just a half step.
Joe Rock singled up the middle to begin the sixth inning and would move up to scoring position on Coleman Roberts' sacrifice bunt. Gregory, however, then got back-to-back groundouts to keep the Beavers off the board.
BVU again had a pair of runners on base after back-to-back two-out singles in the seventh but Gregory worked himself out of the jam with a strikeout.
Rock again looked to start up a late-game rally for the Beavers by lining the first pitch of the eighth inning into left field, but would later be erased on an inning-ending double play.
Bonde would hit the leadoff batter in the eigth and was lifted after a sacrifce bunt put a runner at second with one out. Gage Smart came on in relief and the runner would steal third base on the first pitch and come around to score on a sacrifice fly.
Mike Tobin came on in relief for Concordia Chicago in the ninth and worked a perfect inning for his eighth save of the year.
Rock, Roberts and Paper all finished with two hits for the Beavers as they outhit the Cougars, 7-5, in the contest. BVU, however, stranded eight runners while Concordia Chicago left seven on base.
Bonde suffered the loss, despite allowing just five hits and striking out four over 7.1 innings.
Buena Vista will now play at 8:30 a.m. on Saturday morning against the loser of the other opening round game between St. John's and Baldwin Wallace.