The Bruins continue to show their one of the hottest baseball teams in the NAIA by clinching a spot in the Avista-NAIA World Series last week.
After winning the NSAA Tournament to advance to the NAIA Opening Round May 13-15 in Shreveport, La, the Bruins were paired with a familiar foe in the Shreveport Bracket in York College.
The six-team bracket saw the Bruins as the third seed and York the fifth seed. Oklahoma City was the first seed.
The Bruins, ranked 21st in NAIA, defeated No. 2 seed LSU Shreveport, ranked 11th in NAIA, before defeating York twice, including in the championship, to advance to the World Series for the first time since 2016 and 14th time overall.
The 10-team World Series is set for May 24-31 in Lewiston, Idaho at Harris Field with Bellevue (46-14) riding a 26-game win streak and having won 39 of 40 overall since March 9.
BU will open its World Series run with a bout against No. 23-ranked Indiana Tech, which comes in with a 41-14-1 record.
Bellevue 10, LSU Shreveport 7 — Tied at 2-all, the Bruins scored a pair in the third before the Pilots tied the game in the fifth. Then a five-run seventh inning by the Bruins provided too much support for a two-run rally by LSU Shreveport in the eighth. Each team tallied a run in the ninth.
Bellevue’s Riley Baasch paced the Bruins at the plate with three hits and four runs scored, while JT Patterson tallied two hits and scored two runs and Austin Alexander added two hits and three RBIs.
Bellevue 6, York College 1 — The Bruins jumped ahead 5-0 before York tallied two runs in the fourth inning. Bellevue added an insurance run in the eighth. Cody Banks, Stuart Eurich, Bailey Link, Travis Tanaka and Kory Longaker each complied two hits with the latter two adding two RBIs.
Starting pitcher Jarret Poh moved to 9-0 this season with a complete game allowing an unearned run on six hits.
Bellevue 10, York 4 — The Bruins scored five runs in the first two inning before York got one back in the third. Bellevue held a 3-2 advantage in the sixth to lead 7-4 and then tallied three more runs before the end to advance to the World Series.
Banks, Baasch and Alexander each tallied two RBIs, while Longaker scored two runs. Colton Walker pitched 5 1/3 innings for the win and Anthony Alvarado pitched the rest of the way to earn his first save.
• The Bruins softball season came to an end in the NAIA Opening Round to finish with a 44-20 record.
Bellevue was the third seed in the Dodge City bracket May 13-15 that ended with a pair of losses. Science & Arts (Okla.) was the first seed in bracket.
The Bruins lost to No. 2 seed Houston-Victoria, ranked 20th overall, before falling in the losers bracket to No. 4 seed Avila to end their season.
Houston-Victoria 6, Bellevue 1 — The Jaguars scored five-straight runs before the Bruins scored a run in the fourth. Houston-Victoria added an insurance run in the seventh. Ashley Young and Emily Rochford each tallied two hits with the latter hitting a solo homer.
Avila 4, Bellevue 3 — Even though the Bruins out-hit the Eagles 11-4 in the game, allowing three runs in the first inning ended up the deal breaker. The Bruins trailed 3-2 after three innings before Avila added one back in the fifth for a 4-2 score.
In the sixth inning, Maricela Egan ripped a double with runners on the corners to put runners on second and third with one out and down one run.
After a walk to load the bases, back-to-back fielders choice got the Eagles out of the inning.
Then in the seventh, the Bruins leadoff single was followed by three-straight outs to end their season. Katlyn Kinman, Emily Mendick and Egan each recorded a RBI.