May 13, 2012
The University of Minnesota fell, 6-5, today to the Nebraska Cornhuskers in Lincoln. Neb. With the loss, it marked the third-straight one-run loss for the Golden Gophers. Minnesota dropped to 28-25 and 10-11 on the season.
For the third-straight day, Nebraska jumped out early as Minnesota attempted comebacks. The Gophers trailed the game, 6-2 and tied a season-high 16 hits, but the Gophers stranded 12 on base for their 11th conference loss of the season.
Minnesota was led by Matt Halloran, who reached base in all five plate appearances. He had a walk in his first at bat and followed with a 4-4 game. Dan Olinger went 3-5 with a run scored and an RBI. Michael Handel was 2-4 on the day.
Austin Lubinsky started the game and dropped to 3-4 on the season. Ben Meyer came into the game and sent down the last 10 batters he faced. He went 4.2 innings, allowed one run and scattered just four hits and stuck out two.
Nebraska took an early 2-0 lead in the second when Austin Darby and Kale Kiser combined for back-to-back solo home runs. Darby hit one off the scoreboard in right center, while Kiser added a home run in right to go up early.
Nebraska added its third home run of the game when Chad Christensen hit the third home run of the game to left center. Minnesota, however, would get two runs back in the top of the fourth. Minnesota strung together three-straight hits en route to the two runs. Halloran led off the inning with a single to right, while Geason followed with a single through the right side. Olinger, who returned to the lineup after missing two games due to injury, hit a RBI single to right center, scoring Halloran from third. The Gophers would also get another run on a passed ball when Geason touched home.
Nebraska, however, would plate another two in the fourth to go up, 5-2. After Darby doubled, he would later come around on a wild pitch, while Burleson would come around to score on an infield hit. The Huskers would add another run in the fifth inning for a 6-2 lead. Puhl cut the Husker lead to three when he drove home Olinger with an up-the-middle RBI single.
Minnesota would cut the lead to one when the Gophers added another two runs in the eighth inning. Bobby Juan started the inning off with a single. Trip Schultz came in to pinch run and advanced to second on a wild pitch. Handel followed up with a single, followed by a Puhl sacrifice fly to put the game at 6-4. David Bettenburg pinch hit and delivered a RBI single to right center as Handel came in to score. Halloran would have another single, to put runners on the corners with two outs, but the Gophers couldn't push the tying run across.
Meyer would enter the game in the fourth inning and allowed a run in the fifth inning. From then on, he shut down the Huskers in order in the sixth, seventh and eighth inning.
Minnesota will look to rebound next week as it faces Illinois. The Golden Gophers will have a short week as the Illini series is Thursday-Saturday in Champaign, Ill. Thursday's game will be televised live on the Big Ten Network at 6:35 p.m. Friday's game is set for a 6:05 p.m. start, while Saturday's contest is at noon.
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