Alma, Mich. - The Alma College baseball team continued its march towards its first-ever berth in the Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association Tournament with a home sweep of Olivet College on Friday (May 6) afternoon at Klenk Park. The Scots opened the four-game series with a 10-0 victory before posting a 16-1 triumph in the second half of the home doubleheader.
Junior Alex Valasek (Saginaw, Mich./Nouvel Catholic Central) threw his first carer no-hitter in the first game, retiring 17 consecutive batters before issuing his first walk. Valasek struck out six batters and allowed two walks while improving his overall record to 7-1.
Valasek's no-hitter, the first for an Alma College pitcher since 2001 to accomplish the feat, also set a record for wins in a season for the Scots. Alma is now 25-14, which represents the most wins by any baseball team in school history. The Scots are also 16-10 in the MIAA, which is a school record.
As of Friday's game, Alma sits in third place, one half-game behind second-place Hope College and has secured a spot in the conference tournament. Adrian College has secured the regular-season championship, while three teams are vying for the final positioning in the MIAA Tournament. The top two seeds host the first round of the MIAA Tournament on Wednesday, May 11. Alma can finish as high as second in the final standings.
The Scots will close out the regular-season on Saturday, May 7, with a two-game set at Olivet College. First pitch is scheduled for 1:00 p.m.
Game 1 - at Alma 10, Olivet 0 (7 innings)
Valasek retired the first 17 batters as the Scots recorded six extra-base hits to pick up the win in the opening game.
The Scots scored five times in the bottom of the second, which started with a home run by junior Adam Thoryk (Syracuse, N.Y./John C. Birdlebough/St. John Fisher). Junior Alex Peczynski (Farmington Hills, Mich./Detroit Catholic Central) added a triple - one of two in the game for him - two at-bats later to score senior Dayne San Miguel (Wheeler, Mich./Breckenridge/Kellogg CC). Alma scored three more times with two outs in the inning, including a two-RBI double by junior Greg Goffee (Dexter, Mich./Dexter).
After adding a run in the fourth, the Scots closed out the game with a four-run sixth inning on a RBI single by San Miguel and a two-RBI triple by Peczynski. Junior Patrick Finn (Allentown, Mich./Almont) closed out the scoring with a RBI single of his own, scoring Peczynski.
Game 2 - at Alma 16, Olivet 1 (7 innings)
Alma put 10 runs on the board through three innings and cruised to a 16-1 win in seven innings, forcing the 10-run rule.
Peczynski added another three RBIs, going 2-for-3 with a double for his third third extra-base hit of the day, while sophomore Austin Roeske (Warren, Mich./De La Salle Collegiate) and senior Yoan De La Rosa (Bronx, N.Y./Morris/Monroe College) each went 3-for-3, with Roeske adding three RBIs.
Senior Matt Launstein (Flushing, Mich./Flushing) picked up the win, working the mound for five innings and striking out five. Senior Blake Ordiway (Holly, Mich./Holly) closed the game out in the top of the seventh.
Alma honored the program's nine seniors in between games.
Junior Alex Valasek
On the no hitter...
"It was incredible. It was the first one I ever threw, and especially at this level it's great to do. Olivet is a good team and they put a lot of balls into play, but I got good defense behind me and it was a good win."