Feb. 2, 2013
The University of Minnesota baseball team opened its 125th year as a varsity sport hosting the Pro & Legends Alumni Game, Saturday, Feb. 2 at the HHH Metrodome. For the seventh straight time, the Golden Gophers defeated their alums, 4-1. In the 19th year of this event, the Gophers are now 11-7-1 in event.
Michael Handel went 2-2 in the game, while Matt Halloran, Troy Larson, JT Canakes, Dan Olinger, Tony Skjefte and Alex LaShomb all collected a hit. Skjefte had two RBI, while LaShomb and David Bettenburg each had one. Alex Tukey picked up the win the Gophers, while Billy Soule held the save.
A total of 26 alums were introduced to the crowd, including current Major League Baseball players Cole De Vries (Minnesota Twins), Jack Hannahan (Cincinnati Reds) and Glen Perkins. After the Gopher newcomers sang the national anthem and the rouser, the two teams were ready to begin.
The alum pitchers did not pitch in the game, and the Gopher pitching staff was separated between the two teams. Tom Windle started for the Gophers, while Ben Meyer started for the Pro Alums. Both teams went scoreless through the first five innings before the Pros struck first. The Pros got on the board when Robb Quinlan scored on a Gopher error in the top of the sixth.
Minnesota came right back and plated three in the bottom of the sixth to take a 3-1 lead. Handel started things off with an infield single, while Canakes doubled to the left field line. Skjefte knocked in two with a single and advanced to second. After Skjefte advanced to third on an error, Bettenburg delivered a sacrifice bunt for the Gophers third run.
Playing all nine full innings, the Gophers added their last run in the bottom of the ninth for the 4-1 final. Dan Motl started the inning off with a walk. After he stole second, he advanced to third on an error from the catcher on the throw to second. LaShomb doubled, which scored Motl from third.
Minnesota opens the regular season at No. 12 UCLA, Feb. 15-17 in Los Angeles. Minnesota's next home action will be Feb. 22-24 as it hosts Western Michigan in four games, Feb. 22-24 at the Dome.
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