Warriors carry a 3-game winning streak into early home opener

Warriors carry a 3-game winning streak into early home opener

MT. CARMEL, Ill. -- It is rare when Wabash Valley gets to play a home baseball game in February. 

It happened in 2021, when the Warriors swept a doubleheader from Morton College on February 27th. A scan of past records indicates that may be the earliest official home game on record. 

Until 2023. 

The Warriors, ranked eighth in the NJCAA pre-season poll, are set to host Vincennes (3-4 on the season) on Tuesday in what may be the earliest home game in program history. And they will carry a three-game winning streak into the 1 p.m. CST nine-inning game at Fournier Field. 

WVC (6-5) is coming off a weekend sweep of 12th-ranked Georgia Highlands (9-4). On Saturday, the Warriors rallied for a 4-3 win in an extra-inning doubleheader opener, followed by a 7-4 win in the nitecap. Then on Sunday, the big bats came out in a 16-7 victory in the series finale. 

Cincinnati native Maddox Pennington, a 5-10 sophomore lefthander, will make his first collegiate start for the Warriors, who have won five of their last seven games. It will be his fourth appearance on the mound this season for Aaron Biddle's club. 

The game will be video streamed live here: https://portal.stretchinternet.com/wabashvalley/  

Here is a recap of the Georgia Highlands series: 


The Warriors, trailing 3-1 early, rallied for two runs in the top of the seventh to tie the game at 3-3, then pushed across what turned out to be the winning run in the eighth on a two-out double by Keaton Mahan that scored Aidyn Coffey. 

Luke Leverton hurled three innings of relief of starting pitcher Jacob Frost to pick up his first win of the season. The righthanded Leverton, a transfer from Miami (Ohio), has now thrown nine scoreless innings in three calls from the bullpen. 

Luke Odden came through with a hit that tied the game in the seventh, a two-out, two-run single that scored Bruce Jellison and Michael Lareau. 


The Warriors exploded for six runs in the third inning then held on for the win. Jorge Rodriguez hit a three-run homer to account for half of the output, scoring Jellison and Landon Johnson ahead of him. 

Other RBIs came from Nick Williams, who tripled home Rich Bonomolo, and Jellison, who followed with a single that scored Williams.  

Following the blast by Rodriguez, Yamil Torres tripled, and scored on a passed ball. 

The Warriors added an insurance run in the sixth on an RBI single from Bonomolo that scored Isaias Villarreal. 

Georgia Highlands scored three runs in the fourth inning and once in the fifth but could get no closer. Starter Agnel Miranda went 3 2/3 innings and picked up the win, evening his record at 1-1. 

Aiden Deakins and Sam Mettert worked out of the pen, as did Louis Phillipe Langevin, who got the final two outs with the tying run at the plate to earn his first save. 


On Sunday, Bonomolo had a five-hit day to lead the way at the plate, though everybody got into the act in a game the Warriors turned into a rout. 

Five different hitters collected two or more RBIs in the win. Bonomolo and Williams each had three, while Jellison, Rodriguez, and Torres drove home two runs apiece. 

Wabash Valley led only 4-2 after five innings. But successive four-run outbursts in the sixth, seventh, and eighth changed the tenor of the game. 

Torres smacked a two-run homer in the eighth inning for the longest of the 20-hit Warrior attack, but other bats in the lineup pounded out four doubles and one triple on top of that. 

Starting pitcher Mike Sokol pitched four innings, enough to pick up the win and improve to 2-0. He got relief help from Cade Schneider, Manuel De Gracia, and Charez Butcher.