Fresh off the Oaks first ever playoff win a mere 24 hours ago, Menlo dropped their second postseason matchup 9-2 to College of Idaho in day two of the 2012 NAIA West Playoff Tournament. The defeat pushes the Oaks to the brink of elimination, as they will now need a victory against Concordia University on Friday (5/4) to keep their season alive.
Menlo dug themselves in an early hole after the Coyotes jumped out to a 3-0 advantage heading into the bottom of the 3rd. A 1st inning RBI double off the bat of Jarel Lewis and a two-run base knock by Tanner Hodges in the 3rd set the tone early.
The Oaks came back with a run in the bottom of the 3rd after a ball hit by Collin Forgey snuck through the wickets of third baseman Jeffrey Harris, plating Mickey Phelps with Menlo's first run.
A batter later with the Oaks now down 3-1 and runners on first and second and two down, Michael Brandi fisted a grounder up the middle, but thanks to a diving play by shortstop Tanner Hodges, the ball stayed on the infield. Hodges immediately sprung to his feet and fired a strike to third to get Taylor Cohn rounding the bag to end the inning.
College of Idaho would extend their two run lead with two in the 5th and three more in the 6th to take a commanding 8-1 advantage. Hodges earned his third RBI with a two-out 5th inning double into right center, and the aforementioned Jeffrey Harris followed with an RBI double of his own to push the count to 5-1.
After a run scoring single by Todd Griffitsh in the top of the 6th, Izaac Garsez put the game on ice with a booming two-run home run into right center. Garsez finished the contest with an impressive 3-for-4 showing, scoring four runs and driving in two.
The Coyotes did most of their damage off of Derek Martinez, who suffered the loss after going 6.1 innings and allowing eight earned runs on 11 hits, while striking out seven.
On the opposite side of the equation Todd Griffiths went the distance for the Coyotes, scattering 11 hits while giving up one earned run to pick up the win.
Menlo will look to keep their season alive tomorrow against the Cavaliers of Concordia University who took out British Columbia 7-1 in the day two finale. First pitch is scheduled for 12:00pm and the winner will advance to play College of Idaho in the championship set to begin at 3:00pm.