Gophers Drop Doubleheader to Spartans

Go Gophers! Schaefbauer had two hits in the second game.
Go Gophers!
Schaefbauer had two hits in the second game.
Go Gophers!

March 30, 2014

After winning the first game of the series on Saturday, the University of Minnesota (14-9, 3-3 Big Ten) baseball team lost both games of a Sunday doubleheader at Siebert Field. The Spartans (12-11, 3-3 Big Ten) shut out the Golden Gophers 15-0 and 5-0.

Game 1: Michigan State 15, Minnesota 0 - Box Score

Michigan State drew 16 walks in the first game and had five hit batsmen, in addition to the Spartans' 13 hits. Starter Justin Alleman pitched eight shutout innings, giving up five hits and four walks.

Left fielder Cam Gibson and designated hitter Blaise Salter collected three hits apiece. Both Salter and third baseman Dan Durkin drove in four runs.

Right fielder Bobby Juan and left fielder Jake Bergren hit doubles for the Gophers, but they did not come around to score. In the seventh, Minnesota had singles from first baseman Mark Tatera and catcher Matt Stemper, who made his first appearance behind the plate as a substitute. But again, the Gophers could not get a run.

The Spartans first took the lead in the third when Gibson reached on a bunt single, stole second, advanced on a wild pitch and scored on a ground ball by Salter.

Michigan State added five runs in the next inning with a combination of hits, walks, a hit batter and a throwing error on a pickoff attempt. The Spartans would add two more in the sixth, six in the seventh and one in the eighth.

Starter Jordan Jess (0-4) took the loss for the Gophers, giving up four runs in three innings. Alleman moved to 3-1 on the season with the win.

Game 2: Michigan State 5, Minnesota 0 - Box Score

Starter Ben Meyer struck out a career-high eight batters, but gave up two home runs in 5 2/3 innings. Minnesota's offense only tallied four hits, two by second baseman Connor Schaefbauer, in a game shortened to eight innings due to Michigan State's travel schedule.

Center fielder Anthony Cheky scored three runs. The first came in the first inning after reaching on a single. Center fielder Jimmy Pickens drove him in with a double.

Cheky walked in the third and scored again when Salter hit a home run over the left field fence to put Michigan State up 3-0. Catcher Joel Fisher led off the next inning with a home run. Cheky scored his and the Spartans' last run on a Salter sacrifice fly in the fifth.

The Gophers never had multiple baserunners in an inning in the second game. Other than Schaefbauer's two singles, catcher Tatera and third baseman Tony Skjefte each had a hit for Minnesota.

Cam Vieaux (3-1) pitched six innings, giving up three hits and walking two, to get the win for the Spartans. The loss moved Meyer's record to 2-2 for the Gophers.

Doubleheader Notes
*Minnesota has now played four doubleheaders this season, three of them with the same opponent in both games.
*Tyler Hanson both pitched and played first base on Sunday, while Tatera played both first base and catcher.
*Second baseman Johnny Nate was hit by pitch five times on Sunday.
*Salter had five hits on Sunday (5-for-8) and seven runs batted in.
*Stemper is the fifth different Gopher to spend time at catcher this season.