Mavericks run away with doubleheader against Crookston

The Minnesota State University, Mankato baseball team kept their successful season going yesterday with a doubleheader sweep against Minnesota Crookston. The Mavs defeated the Golden Eagles 7-2 in game one and then 11-1 in game two.

Senior Cam Kline got the start on the mound in game one and improved to 4-0 on the season, letting up only two runs in seven innings pitched. 

The Golden Eagles were the first to get on the board in game one, as senior infielder Jack Peppel picked up an RBI single to right field in the top of the second inning. MSU would answer in the third and fourth innings as sophomore infielder Jackson Hauge picked up an RBI double and senior infielder Ross Indlecoffer blasted a solo homerun to take a 2-1 lead.

Crookston would get one back in the top of the fifth, tying the game up at 2-2. The Mavericks would find themselves up 4-2 in the sixth inning after juniors Ryan Wickman and Nick Altermatt were walked with the bases loaded. 

Junior infielder Mikey Gottschalk would add one more run in the sixth with a sacrifice-fly to left field. The Mavericks would add two more runs in the seventh inning, finishing off the Golden Eagles 7-2 in game one. 

Sophomore Nathan Culley improved to 2-1 on the mound with his win in game two. The Andover, Minn. native allowed only five hits in five innings pitched while striking out six batters.

Like game one, the Golden Eagles were the first to get on the board as redshirt-senior Brad Morris tallied an RBI single to right center in the top of the first. Fortunately for MSU, that was all the scoring Crookston would see the rest of the game.

Indlecoffer got the Mavs rolling in the second inning with an RBI single through the left side. Minnesota State opened the floodgates in the fourth inning, pouring on five runs and taking a commanding 6-1 lead.

The Mavericks would add two more runs in the sixth inning including an RBI single through the left side by Gottschalk. Gottschalk would bring the lead to 10-1 in the eighth inning with a two-run RBI double to left center field.

Sophomore infielder Ryan Friedges capped off the 11-1 MSU win with a solo homerun in the top of the ninth. 

MSU head coach Matt Magers talked briefly about why he thought his team was successful in both games. “I thought we played very good overall defense,” Magers said. “When we let up only two or three runs in two games, we’re going to be very successful.”

Minnesota State will return to action Apr. 15 and 16 as they take on Winona State in two sets of doubleheaders. The Warriors come into this weekend’s games with a 9-14 overall record and 7-5 in Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference (NSIC) play. 

The Mavericks dominate the Warriors all-time with a convincing 22-7 overall record, and the last time the two teams met was back in May of 2021, where the Mavs won 4-1.

Winona’s hitting this season is led by senior outfielder Carter Brinkman, who owns a .304 batting average. Brinkman has tallied 24 hits this season and 14 runs including 15 RBIs. 

Senior Nicolas Herold leads the Warrior’s pitching crew this season with a 3-0 overall record and a 3.51 earned run average. Herold has pitched in 25.2 innings this season and has allowed 26 hits while striking out 45 batters in the process. 

Magers commented on what the team needs to do to be successful this weekend against the Warriors saying, “Just go out and play. We’ve put in the work during the offseason and at this point it’s about going out and executing.”

Header Photo: Senior pitcher Brendan Knoll leads the team in ERA at 0.70 and WHIP at 0.78. Knoll has collected a 5-1 record in three starts, allowing just 21 hits in 137 at-bats to go along with 33 strikeouts in 38.1 innings pitched. (Dylan Engel/The Reporter)

Write to Karson Buelow at karson.buelow@mnsu.edu.

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