Five punch tickets to World Series

Randolph-Macon dogpile
Randolph-Macon took a lot of the suspense out of Sunday at the South Regional, but it didn't take any of the excitement out of the traditional dogpile celebration.
Photo by Dave Hilbert,
Connor Gill fields a ground ball.
Mike Formella pitched a complete game to send the Concordia-Chicago Cougars back the the D-III World Series.
Concordia Chicago athletics photo

Concordia-Chicago swept its way back to Appleton, Randolph-Macon won the South Regional and Oswego booked its trip as the 2018 Division III World Series field began to take shape on Sunday.

Because of weather delays, the Central Regional can't be finished until Monday, nor can the Mid-Atlantic. The Mideast Regional had the championship game scheduled for Sunday evening, but even that was pushed back to Monday.

Randolph-Macon went two-and-out in the Old Dominion Athletic Conference tournament, but went undefeated in the South Regional, wrapping it up with an 11-2 win vs. Christopher Newport. The Yellow Jackets made it easy on their pitching staff, jumping out to a six-run first inning, adding four in the fourth and cruising to the win. Michael Zubovich went the first six innings to improve to 3-0, then five relievers combined to face one batter over the minimum the rest of the way.

After losing to UW-Oshkosh on Saturday, Concordia-Chicago knew it would need to defeat the Titans twice to move on. And sweep, they did, as the Cougars defeated Appleton's hometown favorite 7-1 and 3-2 to secure its return trip to the Division III World Series. The second game featured a clutch performance by ace reliever Mike Formella, who got the start and threw a season-high nine innings, allowing no earned runs, to set off the celebration. 

Oswego head coach has the Lakers headed back to Appleton. Oswego scored four in the fourth and three in the second en route to a 10-4 win over top seeded UMass Boston. With four unearned runs after the opening inning, the UMass starter was out and the Lakers continue to pound the ball and the succession of relievers brought out by the Beacons. Oswego State succumbed to freshman jitters in 2017 but the experience last year will just make the 2018 version dangerous team next weekend.

Texas Lutheran gave up a game tying home run in the ninth inning but walked it off in the tenth in a 6-5 win over Willamette as they qualify for the fourth slot in this weekend's double elimination tournament. Keaton Boysen's walk-off RBI single in the bottom of the 10th scored Ben Marvin from second base and set off a wild on-field celebration. The win was the third win by one run in the tournament for the the Bulldogs as they went 4-0 in Spokane, Washington.

Jackson Roberts had three RBIs and Charles Groppe pitched effectively through five innings as Swarthmore continues their unexpected season with a 9-3 win over Soutehrn Maine and the New York Regional crown. Not expected to contend for a Centennial title, not expected to content for a regional crown, Swarthmore has defied the odds and is headed to new heights as one of eight teams that will contend for a national championship for the first time in program history. In their first NCAA Tournament appearance since 1985, the Garnet did not lose any of its four games in the regional tournament, taking out the Huskies twice, No. 9 Cortland once and Baldwin Wallace once.