April 15, 2014
In his first start at catcher since March 9, freshman Austin Athmann hit 3-for-3 to lead the University of Minnesota (18-14) baseball team to a 5-3 win against North Dakota State. Athmann scored in the sixth to give the Gophers their first lead of the day over the Bison (8-16).
The Gophers tallied nine hits to the Bison's seven. Minnesota committed two errors, and NDSU committed one.
NDSU scored on an error in the first inning. Tim Colwell led off with a hit before coming around to score on a throwing error during a double play attempt.
The Bison threatened to score again in the third, when Andy Wicklund tried to score on a single by Ben Petersen. Dan Motl fielded the ball in center and threw it to second baseman Chris Schaaf, who threw home. Athmann blocked the plate and tagged Wicklund to save the run.
Athmann singled and doubled in his first two at bats, and added another single to lead off the sixth. He scored on an error to give the Gophers their first lead of the afternoon, 2-1.
A three-run seventh, largely powered by pinch hitters, padded the Gophers’ lead. Handel (2-for-5) hit a double, and pinch hitters Bobby Juan and Jake Bergren walked to load the bases. Athmann drew a walk to score Handel. Then Dan Olinger hit a pinch-hit single to right center to score two and make it 5-1.
The Bison cut the lead to 5-3 with two hits and two walks in the eighth. Pinch hitter David Ernst drove in two runs with a two-out single to center.
Kevin Kray got the final out of the eighth and pitched a scoreless ninth to earn his third save. Toby Anderson, who pitched two innings of hitless relief, improved to 2-0 with the win. Kevin Folman dropped to 0-3 with the loss, having let in the unearned go-ahead run in the sixth.
Brian Glowicki pitched four innings and gave up four hits and one unearned run in his first career start for Minnesota. He struck out two batters and walked none.
The Gophers will travel to Iowa City this weekend for a series against the Hawkeyes (April 18-20). They will return home for a rescheduled game against Hamline on April 23 at 4:05 p.m., before hosting Penn State in a conference series (April 25-27).
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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.