While the hot streak may have ended, Minnesota State Baseball enters back into the win column, following their road trip to another neutral site.
Last Sunday, the Mavs took on Minot State University in their annual in-conference series. The only difference this time is that due to constant weather changes, both teams met at a neutral site in Omaha, Nebraska.
Unfortunately, The Mavs lost 2-1 against the Beavers in game one of the Sunday doubleheaders. After striking out in the top of the first, the Beavers catcher Matt Malone drove the ball down the right field line for a triple to score.
It wasn’t until the top of the third when junior infielder Mikey Gottschalk doubled to center field to send junior outfielder Ryan Wickman home, tying the game. However, their attempt to make a comeback immediately fell short.
The Beavers star outfielder, Brent Riddle, hammered a ball off Junior pitcher Nathan Culley for a home run. This play ultimately sealed the game for the Mavs and gave Culley his first loss of the season. However, the loss in game one caused the Mavs to respond in a dramatic fashion.
Following a small grace period, both sides took the field for the second game of the day. Entering the second inning, both sides traded off scoring. Junior infielder Adam Schneider homered to center, giving him his first home run of the year. The Beavers responded with a double and single to give them a 2-1 score entering the third.
However, the Mavs took control after a Grand slam from Gottschalk and a double from Wickman, giving the Mavs a 5-1 lead entering the fourth. The Beavers tried to make their way back into the contest after two homers in the fourth and fifth, making it a one-score game. But then, came the final three innings of play in the contest.
During those three innings, the Mavs proceeded to score nine unanswered runs. Countless singles, stolen bases, and errors from the Beavers’s defense caused the Mavs to run up the board. This evened the series up at 1-1 to conclude Sunday’s doubleheader.
As Monday finally arrived, The Mavs continued to run up the board with a 3-0 lead entering the sixth. However, the Beavers made the most out of their last breath. The Beavers earned three runs off a wild pitch, a fielder’s choice, and a walked batter, tying the game and forcing extra innings.
Both sides would be unable to generate a chance to win in four innings, causing the Mavs to rely heavily on senior pitcher Chandler Fochs to keep them in the contest. It wasn’t until the top of the eleventh where they got their first chance.
Sophomore Aiden Byrne gave the Mavs their first score since the sixth inning with a fielder’s choice that allowed them to score and a one-score lead. The Mavs pitching staff then sealed the game 4-3 in the eleventh to give them a 2-1 series win over the Beavers.
Write to Charlie Groebner at Charles.Groebner@mnsu.edu
Header Photo: The MSU Men’s Baseball team wins two of three games after a triple-game series against Minot State between Sunday, March 26 and Monday, March 27. (File photo)