The St. Thomas baseball season ended Saturday night with a 2-1 loss to St. John's in the MIAC playoffs at CHS Field in downtown St. Paul.
The Tommies (20-18) won an earlier elimination game on Saturday, 6-5 in 10 innings over Gustavus Adolphus, but could muster only five hits against St. John's pitching. The Johnnies (33-7), who won the regular-season MIAC title, will play Bethel Sunday for the playoff crown.
The nightcap was a tightly played game with outstanding starting pitching from freshman Graham Laubsher of St. Thomas and Bennett Wiggins of St. John's. Laubsher pitched a complete game, giving up six hits, striking out 10 and throwing 156 pitches, while Wiggins gave up four hits and struck out eight over eight innings.
St. John's scored first in the top of the sixth on a Laubsher wild pitch after moving runners to second and third with a one-out bunt by the cleanup hitter. The Tommies tied the game in the bottom of the inning with an Avery Lehman double and a Zach Gottfredsen RBI single – one of his five hits on the day.
The Johnnies scored the winning run in the ninth on a sacrifice fly after loading the bases with one out on two singles and a walk. St. Thomas put a runner on first with two outs in the ninth but a groundout ended the game.
UST 6, Gustavus 5
Senior catcher Logan Kohorst hit his first home run of the season in the bottom of the 10th inning to lead St. Thomas to a 6-5 comeback win over Gustavus Adolphus in the MIAC playoffs
The walk-off home run to left field – the second of Kohorst's career – came on a 3-1 pitch and capped a rally from a 5-2 deficit. The Tommies (20-17) will play St. John's in a Saturday nightcap at CHS Field in downtown St. Paul; the winner will advance to a Sunday game against Bethel and the loser's season will be over.
Sophomore closer Shaun Falbo, who set down the Gusties 1-2-3 in the top of the 10th, picked up his first win of the year. He relieved senior starter Ryan Zimmerman, who pitched nine innings and threw 157 pitches.
Zimmerman struggled in the first inning. He walked two and gave up a double and a single to four of the first five batters for Gustavus, which took a 3-0 lead.
The Tommies sent seven batters to the plate in tying the game in the eighth. Cobbs drove in the first run with a sacrifice fly, the second came in on a throwing error and a Zach Gottfredsen single tied the game. St. Thomas put two runners on base in the ninth with one out but could not score.