March 30, 2013
The University of Minnesota baseball team spilt a double header against Michigan and took two of three games on the weekend as the Golden Gophers opened the Big Ten Conference season with a series win. Minnesota, who won the first game on an outstanding complete game performance by Tom Windle, won the first game, fell in the second game, 11-3, but bounced back and won the deciding game, 2-1, today in Ann Arbor, Mich.
Minnesota was led in hitting by Andy Henkemeyer, Kurt Schlangen and Alex LaShomb in the two games. Henkemeyer was 3-9 on the day with a run scored and run batted in, while Schlangen was 3-8 with a run scored. LaShomb was 2-4 with a run scored and walked four times during the doubleheader. Mark Tatera, Ryan Abrahamson, Troy Larson and Tony Skjefte all had a RBI in the doubleheader.
Minnesota used six pitchers in the doubleheader. Ben Meyer started the first game and was credited with the loss in 4.2 innings pitched. He allowed nine hits and three earned runs. Also seeing action in the loss was Dalton Sawyer, Alex Tukey and Kevin Kray. Minnesota used the pitching duo of Alec Crawford and DJ Snelten in the win.
Crawford and Snelten, both are coming off an injury and split time in the second-game win. In 5.1 innings pitched, Crawford scattered four hits, allowed one unearned run, struck out three and did not issue a walk. Although Crawford started the game, Snelten picked up the win when he pitched 3.2 innings, allowed just two hits and struck out two. Pitching against Kansas State and Texas, Snelten collected his first win of the season.
Minnesota is scheduled to play South Dakota State on Wednesday, April 3 in Brookings, S.D. The Gophers are set to open Siebert Field, April 5-7 against Ohio State. On Tuesday, April 2 the University of Minnesota will hold a grand opening at 12:15 p.m.
Minnesota got on the board when Skjefte drove in a run to put the Gophers up, 1-0. LaShomb started off the inning with a walk and moved to second on a wild pitch. After an infield grounder to move LaShomb to third, Skjefte hit a slow roller to third and beat out a throw as LaShomb touched home. The Gophers added to the lead when Tatera hit a single through the right side to score Henkemeyer. He got on base by an error on the first baseman, while Schlangen was hit by a pitch. Tatera would step up and get a hit through the right side as the Gophers went up, 2-0.
Michigan, however, responded and scored two in the bottom of the third. Michael O’Neill singled and drove home Travis Maezes, who led off the inning with a double. Kevin White would provide a sacrifice fly and scored O’Neill to tie up the game at two.
After tying the game, Michigan would take control when it scored a single run in the fourth, fifth and sixth innings, while plating four in the seventh and another two in the eighth. With one out in the fourth, Cole Martin would hit a home run to run, putting it at 3-2. In the fifth, sixth, seventh innings and eight innings, Michigan would get the lead off runner on and push across runs. The Gophers would only plate one more run, which came in the eighth inning. After Tatera walked, Abrahamson doubled and LaShomb walked, Larson provided a RBI grounder for Minnesota’s third run of the game. However, Michigan continued to add to its lead when it scored two in the bottom of the eighth for the 11-3 final.
Minnesota had three errors in the game to Michigan’s two. The Wolverines left 13 on base and turned two double plays. Minnesota stranded nine runners.
Minnesota would regroup quickly from the first game and score in the first inning to take an early lead. The Gophers got on the board when Abrahamson delivered a RBI to put the Gophers up, 1-0. Schlangen bunted his way on base and moved to first on an infield grounder. He came home when Abrahamson singled to left center with his 14th RBI of the season.
Michigan, however, knotted the game at 1-1 in the bottom of the second when Zach Zott singled and was moved to second on a sacrifice bunt. As he attempted to steal third, a Gopher throwing error scored Zott to tie the game.
The unearned run, however, would be all the Gophers would need for the win. Henkemeyer broke the tie when he plated Larson for a 2-1 lead and the eventual final. Larson led off the inning with a single to left and moved to second on a sacrifice bunt by Skjefte. As he moved to third on a grounder to first, Henkemeyer went the opposite field for his eighth double of the season and a 2-1 score.
Michigan would threaten in the bottom of the ninth when Jacob Cronenworth singled to right and was replaced by pinch runner Patrick Biondi. A Snelten wild pitch and a right field fly would place Biondi at third with two outs. However, Zott would hit a grounder to first as Olinger tossed the ball to Snelten as he covered first and just got to the bag before Zott slid into first.
Around the Bases with Matt Fiedler
Junior Matt Fiedler has been all over the diamond early in his Gophers career.
Around the Bases with Jeff Fasching
Jeff Fasching, a sophomore pitcher, tossed eight innings of relief for the Gophers last season.
Around the Bases with Luke Pettersen
After a successful first season with the Gophers, Luke Pettersen enters his sophomore season on campus.