SEWARD, Neb. – At long last, the Concordia University baseball team made its first home appearance of the 2019 season while hosting Doane on Sunday afternoon (April 7). A large crowd of several hundred greeted the Bulldogs, who just keep coming up with ways to win ballgames. Concordia followed the lead of starting pitchers Jake Fosgett and Tanner Wauhob in wins by scores of 5-3 and 2-1.
A successful Sunday followed up two victories at Doane on Saturday in what amounted to a four-game sweep for fifth-year head coach Ryan Dupic’s squad. A magical run continues. The Bulldogs are 14-0 inside conference play (20-10 overall).
“That says it best – we’re finding ways to win,” Dupic said. “We had first and third in a tie ballgame (of game two) and our guy got picked off of first base. Jesse Garcia’s previous at bat he got called on a strike three with a runner on third, less than two outs. Evan Bohman didn’t get a bunt down and then he steps up and gets the sac fly. Jesse Garcia steps up and gets the base hit. Guys are just staying with things and not letting the past affect them. They’re very resilient.”
There were tense moments at the end of each affair in the four-game conflict with Doane. Three of the contests were decided by a single run. At least so far, every time it looks like the winning streak is in jeopardy, Concordia comes up with a play to turn around its fortunes. It happened in game one when the Bulldogs exploded for five runs in the sixth inning. Then it happened in game two when Christian Meza threw behind a runner to get a key out in a dangerous situation and then when Jesse Garcia stroked the go-ahead base hit.
Of course, it helps a whole lot when starting pitcher after starting pitcher delivers gem after gem. Jake Fosgett (5-1) continued his roll by again unleashing his devastating fastball-curveball combo on the Tigers. The result was 11 strikeouts in a seven-inning complete game. Fosgett eventually surrendered three runs in the seventh just to make for some drama. With two runners on, Fosgett struck out Eduardo Yanez to end the game.
Wauhob (5-1) then ran with the torch in game two and went all nine innings. He allowed one earned run on six hits and two walks while striking out five. Yanez put a scare into the Bulldogs in the ninth with a deep drive to right that was caught by Wade Council up against the fence. Doane (11-21, 7-9 GPAC) proceeded to put one runner on base before Wauhob coaxed a 5-4-3 double play to put it on ice.
Please Wauhob, explain this 14-0 run.
“It’s really hard to explain,” Wauhob said. “We’re really sticking together right now and have a good brotherhood. We’re just trying to stay even-keeled, not have too many highs or lows and stick to us.”
Tiger pitching did a commendable job limiting a Bulldog offense that entered the weekend ranked No. 1 in the GPAC in runs scored per game. Doane starters Jordan Ritzdorf and Lukas White combined to cover 13.1 innings while allowing four earned runs. White fanned 10 Concordia hitters.
The Bulldogs got just the amount of offense they needed to keep the win streak alive. Logan Ryan sparked the outburst in game one by drawing a leadoff walk in the sixth. Evan Bohman broke the ice with a sac fly and Garcia and Keaton Candor both emerged with clutch two-run singles. Ryan also led off the two-run eighth in game two with a single. He scored on another Bohman sac fly and Garcia swatted an RBI single that proved to be the game winner.
“I’m very proud of them,” Dupic said. “The guys are beating me to it. They understand it. We’re going to enjoy this. Doane is a very good baseball team and we need to celebrate this. Those were really good wins. We’re going to enjoy it tonight and then get back to work tomorrow on doing what we need to do to be ready for Tuesday.”
Concordia and Midland (14-17, 7-7 GPAC) will make up a doubleheader on Tuesday in Fremont. First pitch is set for 4 p.m. CT.