Lawrence University baseball needed to sweep St. Norbert to get into the MWC tournament this past weekend. Unfortunately for them, the exact opposite happened, and the Vikings exacerbated their woes against the Green Knights, losing all four games.Games one and two were held in De Pere. The Vikings had their ace Aaron Sorenson pitching. He did a fine job, but it wasn’t good enough, as the Green Knights scored three runs in the bottom of the fifth inning to take the lead for good and would go on to win 4-2. That would clinch the final spot in the MWC tournament for St. Norbert, and have the Vikings looking in from the outside once again. Kevin Fitzsimmons scored one run and knocked in the other going 2-2 for LU.
In the second game, LU jumped out on top early, going up 3-1 on a Fitzsimmons home run, a Doug Coe double, and a single by Ben Clark. The Green Knights came right back, scoring four in the bottom of the sixth, and hung on for the 6-4 win. Matt Papke picked up the loss, giving up four runs in a third of an inning pitched. The Green Knights ran their home winning-streak up to 17 over LU with the doubleheader sweep.
Games three and four moved down to the spacious confines of Miller Park in Milwaukee, the home of the Milwaukee Brewers. Unfortunately, it was LU that looked like the Brewers, taking two losses.
The game was close early on, as both teams traded runs. Fitzsimmons was hot once again for the Vikings, going 2-4 with a run scored and an RBI. The game went to the eighth inning when the Green Knights scored two off of LU pitcher B.J. Chase and took the 8-6 victory.
The second game at Miller Park was tight the entire way through. Josh Ritchie pitched for LU and only gave up three runs and six hits. Unfortunately the Viking offense disappeared and they could only muster two runs in a 3-2 Green Knight victory. The Vikings only got three hits off of John Maki and Mike Herald, and St. Norbert took home the win. The Green Knights have now won an amazing 35 out of the last 37 games against the Vikings.
Next year the Vikings will be losing two seniors in Papke and Chris Stievo, so the core of the LU roster will return next season for another shot at making it back to the MWC tournament for the first time in a very long time.