March 1, 2014
The University of Minnesota baseball team (5-3, 0-0 B1G) split a doubleheader at Louisiana Tech (3-6, 1-2 C-USA) on Saturday in Ruston, La. The Golden Gophers won the first game 4-2 in 10 innings, and lost the second 3-2.
Game 1: Gophers 4, Louisiana Tech 2 (10) - Box Score
The Golden Gophers twice had a one-run lead during the afternoon game, but it took 10 innings to claim their final 4-2 lead. Third baseman Mark Tatera doubled in left fielder Jake Bergren and center fielder Jordan Smith for the deciding runs.
Louisiana Tech answered in the bottom half of the inning. Shortstop Taylor Love (3-for-5) hit a single, stole second and scored on first baseman Tyler Ervine’s single to tie the game 1-1.
Schaefbauer, who scored the first run, drove in the Gophers’ second run. Bergren had hit a one-out single and stole second to get into scoring position for Schaefbauer.
The Bulldogs took advantage of an error to tie it up again in the sixth. Love reached on a bunt single, and advanced two bases on a throwing error. Ervine’s second RBI of the game, on a groundout to second base, allowed Love to score.
In the 10th inning, Bergren led off with a single. He moved to second on a Schaefbauer sacrifice bunt. Smith walked with two outs. Olinger singled to load the bases, and Tatera hit his two-run double off of Laetten Galbraith, who took the loss.
Dalton Sawyer pitched 3 2/3 innings in relief to get the win, striking out three, walking one and giving up five hits. Starter Alec Crawford threw six innings and gave up two runs (one earned) on seven hits. Kevin Kray retired the final batter of the 10th to get the save with two runners on base.
Schaefbauer (2-for-4), Olinger (2-for-5), Bergren (2-for-4) and right fielder Bobby Juan (2-for-4) all turned in multi-hit performances for Minnesota.
Game 2: Louisiana Tech 3, Gophers 2 - Box Score
A two-run home run by catcher Tatera tied the game 2-2 in the top of the seventh, but a solo home run by Ervine gave the Bulldogs the lead for good in the next half inning.
The Bulldogs went ahead 1-0 in the top of the first when designated hitter Colby Johnson singled and scored on a Jordan Jess balk.
Minnesota went without a hit off of starter Adam Derouen until the fourth inning when Schaefbauer hit an infield single. The Gophers then strung two multi-hit innings together—with Olinger and Juan reaching in the fifth and third baseman Tony Skjefte and Schaefbauer reaching in the sixth—but did not score in either.
Louisiana Tech added a run to go up 2-0 in the fith. Second baseman Chandler Hall singled and scored on a fielder’s choice by Love.
Tatera’s home run came in the seventh after Olinger hit a single to left. The hit cleared the right field fence and was the first homer of Tatera’s Minnesota career.
Ervine’s one-run home run came off of Matt Fiedler, who also struck out five batters in 3 1/3 innings, in the eighth inning.
Minnesota almost rallied back in the ninth. Olinger reached on a fielder’s choice, Tatera singled and Juan walked to load the bases with two outs. Matt Halloran then pinch hit and winning pitcher Richie Navari struck him out, one of Navari’s seven strikeouts in five innings.
The third game of the series has been changed to 11:30 a.m. CT Sunday instead of noon.
-Mark Tatera hit 3-for-8 on the day with four RBI, a home run and a double. He played third the first game and caught the second.
-Connor Schaefbauer stole three bases Saturday, in addition to hitting 4-for-8 with a run and an RBI.
-Dan Olinger hit 4-for-9 on the day.
-Matt Fiedler's five strikeouts set a new career in his third appearance. His previous high was two in 1 2/3 innings.
-Joey Brettingen (third base) and David Bettenburg (designated hitter) made their first starts of the season in the second game.
Pitching Coach Todd Oakes Passes Away At 55
Minnesota assistant baseball coach Todd Oakes passed away today after a courageous and public battle with leukemia. Oakes, who coached the Minnesota pitching staff, was 55.
Gophers Drop Out of B1G Tournament
Minnesota falls to Michigan 3-2 in an elimination game on Thursday at TD Ameritrade Park
Minnesota Falls in B1G Tournament Opener
Gophers play at 1 p.m. in an elimination game tomorrow afternoon against either Michigan or Ohio State