Seniors end career with wins
Eight players donned the burgundy and gold for the last time Saturday as the Yeomen ended their 2004 baseball campaign. Senior pitcher John Damron was to the point in reflecting on the end of his Oberlin baseball career.
“It’s crazy,” he said. Along with Damron, shortstop Chris Bamat, designated hitter B.J. Belville, co-captain outfielder Joe Crisp, co-captain pitcher Troy DeWitt, outfielder Ian Haynes, catcher Wes Kania and pitcher Peter Wyatt all played their final games as Yeomen.
Oberlin completed its 2004 season and capped an undefeated week by beating Lake Erie College at home, then sweeping in a doubleheader at Lake Erie, the first game by a score of 9-1 and then 12-4 in the season finale. Oberlin was victorious 19-0 on Thursday over the Storm, who finished the season 6-28.
On Wednesday the Yeomen traveled to Berea where they trounced Baldwin-Wallace 9-3. The Yeomen finished the year with a 16-22 record, improving five games from last year’s 11-27 mark.
“We beat the Oberlin single season win record with 16 and that’s something I’ll always remember,” Wyatt said.
Junior Ryan Drews went the distance for Oberlin against Baldwin-Wallace, allowing three runs, only two of which were earned, on nine hits and four walks while striking out nine. The Yeomen gave Drews all the run support he needed for his third win of the year by putting up a six-spot in the seventh frame.
Like many big offensive innings, Oberlin’s began with a walk to the leadoff hitter, sophomore outfielder Landon Lerner. Lerner would come around to score on first-year Jesse Cullen-Dupont’s bases-clearing triple. Junior Andrew Caprariello capped the rally by swatting a two-run shot over the Heritage Field fence, his second jack on the year.
“I think our win over Baldwin-Wallace really showed what we were capable of,” Wyatt said. “Ryan Drews pitched nine tremendous innings and the offense was able to compile nine runs against a very solid pitching staff.”
With the Baldwin-Wallace game in the books, Oberlin only had Lake Erie College on the calendar the rest of the way, a team they had pounded all year. When all was said and done, the Yeomen had swept the five-game season series with the Storm.
Thursday was senior day, and coach Eric Lahetta gave all his departing players a chance to get in to their last game at Dill Field. DeWitt dominated all seven innings, striking out 16 of the 25 batters he faced during the game while scattering three hits and walking one. Cullen-Dupont led Oberlin with three RBI. Damron, Kania, Belville, junior first baseman Kyle Neumeier and sophomore second baseman Noah Streib each drove in two runs.
Caprariello went two for four with a double and four RBI and DeWitt hit a solo blast in Saturday’s first win against Lake Erie. Wyatt notched his team-leading fourth win of 2004, throwing all seven innings and allowing a run on seven hits and two walks while fanning eight.
Lahetta gave Damron the ball for the final game of the season and he turned in a strong complete game performance for his second win. Damron went all seven innings and only three of the runs he allowed were earned. He gave up five hits, walked one and fanned seven. DeWitt jacked a three-run shot. Neumeier had three RBI on the strength of two doubles. Belville also drove in three for the Yeomen.
“I see a great future for this program, the talent on this team is limitless and I predict nothing but success in the future of OC baseball,” DeWitt said.