After three long months of playing on the road, the day has finally arrived to play at home. Minnesota State Baseball prepares to take ISG Field for the first time this season against the University of Minnesota Duluth Bulldogs in a weekend series.
Coming off their last victory against the University of Saint Mary Sunday, the Mavs will have little time to rest as Friday is growing closer. They are currently riding another win streak and thriving with the current situation they are in. One thing that many people noticed so far is that Head Coach Matt Magers leans a lot on his starting pitchers in games. Coach Magers’ reasoning for that relies more on experience when making deployments.
“We are fortunate to have Culley, Gotto, and Fox as our three starters this year. All three are veterans and have been around the game for a while. We are even more fortunate that they have some great younger guys who are behind them. Only thing is that they need time to learn and experience situations that those three have been in if we are going to be successful,” said Magers.
That experience will certainly be needed with the Bulldogs coming into town. This season, the team has struggled with consistency in its performances and struggled to get on a roll. However, the group will be motivated as they prepare to square up with the Mavs. Currently, they have lost the last six matchups against them and have not beaten the Mavs at home since 2016.
One of the men who will be helping lead the charge for the Bulldogs is sophomore Ethan Cole. The native of Duluth, Minnesota is one of the top players in the Bulldogs’ starting lineup. On top of being an excellent hitter and fielder, he has also made a few appearances on the slab. While he has pitched rather sparingly, he still has three strikeouts and only allowed two runs during that period.
With the weekend projected to be perfect for baseball, the Mavs gear up for the true bulk of the schedule. With only one month left in the season, the competition gets tougher from this point forward. Head Coach Magers is familiar with this atmosphere and is eager to get his group to the next step.
“The real grind of the schedule starts now where we are playing five games a week. Our next few opponents are quality teams and will require us to go deeper into the pitching staff. Last weekend we saw that we needed to go deeper into our staff to finish out games. So it’s exciting, having the opportunity to be in these larger moments, especially for guys who haven’t gotten it yet,” said Magers.
Write to Charlie Groebner at Charles.Groebner@mnsu.edu
Header Photo: MSU Men’s Baseball team gets ready to play against Minnesota Duluth in a three-game series this Friday and Saturday. (File photo)