TUCSON, Ariz. – In its opening doubleheader of a nine-game swing in The Grand Canyon State, the Concordia University baseball team busted loose with a combined 25 runs in a doubleheader sweep of Grace College (Ind.) on Saturday afternoon. The Bulldogs took game 1, 18-3, before finishing the twin bill with a 7-0 victory in the capper.
First-year head coach Ryan Dupic’s squad, now 4-4 overall, blitzed the Lancers (5-5) with nine first-inning runs in game 1. Freshman outfielder Kaleb Geiger, who entered the weekend with a team-leading .381 batting average, recorded three hits while senior right fielder Daniel Wilkerson crushed his 10th career homer and first of the 2015 season.
Then in game 2, freshman Neil Ryan (1-0) dazzled in his second career start at the collegiate level. The native of Grand Junction, Colo., fired a four-hit shutout in a seven-inning complete game. He struck out seven hitters and walked one. Ryan was aided by a solid defensive effort that turned a pair of double plays and committed just a single error.
All three Arizona natives on the Concordia roster made the trip to Tucson: freshman Taylor Bickel, junior Mark Harris and freshman Cade Moring.
Grace College, coached by Bill Barr, is a member of the NAIA’s Crossroads League. The institution is located in Winona Lake, Ind.
Concordia continues action from Tucson at 3 p.m. MST on Sunday with a doubleheader against the University of Jamestown (N.D.). The Jimmies, who went 36-10 overall in 2014, have yet to play a game in 2015.