Concordia run rules Nebraska Wesleyan

By Jacob Knabel on Mar. 19, 2017 in Baseball

LINCOLN, Neb. – The Concordia University baseball team trotted a small village worth of runners around the base paths while demolishing host Nebraska Wesleyan on Sunday. The Bulldogs racked up 12 hits and drew nine walks and three hit-by-pitches in a 15-4, seven-inning victory at Woods Park in Lincoln, Neb.

Third-year head coach Ryan Dupic’s squad won three of its four weekend games, taking both contests from the former GPAC rival Prairie Wolves. Concordia has moved to 11-7 overall.

“Early in the game we drove some balls really well with Casey (Berg) and then multiple doubles in that first inning,” Dupic said. “That made them maybe a little more careful as the game went on. We got to their bullpen very early. When you can do that deep into a weekend, you’re putting yourself in a good situation. Our hitters did a nice job of having good approaches and not expanding the strike zone.”

Senior Casey Berg set the tone for the day by belting a home run in the first at bat of the game. The Bulldogs added two more runs in the top of the first when Kaleb Geiger, Jake Adams and Tyler Nelson each doubled in a span of four hitters. The onslaught was just getting started. Concordia blew the game open with an eight-run fourth inning that featured eight walks and three hit batters. Jake Taylor helped keep the merry-go-round spinning with a three-run triple.

Berg (2-for-4, two runs, stolen base) and Nelson (2-for-3) notched two hits apiece. Adams and Geiger had nearly identical numbers. They both went 1-for-2 with a double, three walks and three runs. Eight different Bulldogs scored at least one run and seven drove in at least one run. Taylor and Ryan Fesmire both collected three RBIs. Jason Galeano and Christian Meza produced two RBIs each.

All that offense provided plenty of support for freshman left-handed pitcher Jason Munsch. The native of Campbell, Calif., had a hiccup in the third inning (three runs), but struck out nine Prairie Wolves over his five frames. All three runs off Munsch came on a home run hit by Kyle Hunter. Munsch allowed two hits and three walks before turning it over to the bullpen. Nic Seaman tossed a scoreless sixth and Cade Moring retired the side in order in the seventh.

“His stuff was really good today,” Dupic said of Munsch. “He missed some spots at times, but his stuff was really, really good.

Prairie Wolf starting pitcher Micah Hoage made it through three innings and was charged with four runs (all earned). Nick Bruno followed him and surrendered seven runs while struggling to find the plate in 0.2 innings.

Concordia showed this weekend how it can win in different ways. The Bulldogs scored a combined 26 runs in their two wins over Nebraska Wesleyan (7-9) and also claimed a 1-0 victory over Jamestown (16-7) on Saturday. Concordia managed to shut out the Jimmies despite allowing 11 hits.

Taking three of four qualifies as a successful weekend.

“If you can win three out of four games every weekend then you get to play baseball for a long time,” Dupic said. “We just tried to stay steady and continue to compete. I see us getting better. I see us making progress. We have to continue to stay the course.”

A trip to Friends University (Kan.) (16-10) is up next for the Bulldogs. Concordia will be in Wichita, Kan., for a 2 p.m. CT doubleheader on Tuesday. The Bulldogs will be back at Plum Creek Park next Friday and Saturday.