LINDSBORG, Kan. – On the final day of a four-game series at Bethany College (Kan.), the Concordia University baseball team fell by scores of 18-6 and 5-4. The previous day, the Bulldogs defeated the Swedes, 5-4, in 12 innings before a 6-5 loss in game 2.
Third-year head coach Ryan Dupic’s squad now stands at 1-3 overall on the young season.
“The first game just got away from us,” Dupic said. “They swung the bats well. We kind of emptied the bullpen and tried to get guys some opportunities and see what we have. I actually thought we were pretty good offensively in the first game, we just didn’t pitch well enough. The second game was a quality baseball game. I thought the guys played well and had good at bats.”
The third one-run game of the weekend series ended in walk-off fashion when a fly ball to right field fell in and chased Joel Quinones to the plate. Taylor Nielson was credited with a game-winning RBI single on the play and the Swedes (13-5) celebrated a series win.
Freshman lefty Jason Munsch got the start on the mound in game 2. The Bulldogs held a 4-3 lead when Munsch was lifted after issuing a leadoff walk in the bottom of the fifth. Concordia turned around a 3-0 deficit by pushing across one run in each of the second, third, fourth and fifth innings. Jake Adams put the Bulldogs on the board with a run-scoring triple. Additional runs came across on a Kaleb Geiger sacrifice fly, a Thomas Sautel single and a Geiger single.
It was a productive day for Adams, the team’s center fielder and No. 5 hitter in the lineup. He went 2-for-3 with a run and an RBI in the second game. He also reached base twice in game 1 by drawing two walks. At the top of the order, third baseman Casey Berg went 2-for-4 with a run in game 1. In that same contest, left fielder Wade Council went 2-for-4 with a run and an RBI. The Bulldogs totaled seven hits in both ends of the twin bill.
Dupic mixed in nine different pitchers throughout the day. Junior righty Neil Ryan took the ball in game 1. He was tagged for 11 runs on nine hits and three walks over three frames.
Dupic expects Concordia’s bats to heat up as the season progresses. “At times we can really string some good at bats together, especially in the top part of our order,” Dupic said. “We want to continue to lengthen our lineup a little bit. For the most part, we were pretty good defensively this weekend. We have some pitchers that did a nice job. We really wanted to get some opportunities for different guys. Coming home 1-3 doesn’t feel that great, but I definitely saw some good things that we can build upon.”
The Tucson Invitational is up next for the Bulldogs. They will begin play in Arizona on Saturday, March 4 when they take on Grand View University (Iowa) (4-2) in a doubleheader. Concordia is scheduled to play 10 games in Tucson between March 4 – 10.