Fosgett, Garcia shine on victorious day in South Dakota

By Jacob Knabel on Mar. 24, 2019 in Baseball

BRANDON, S.D. – The Concordia University baseball team waited until the seventh inning of game one to finally get on the board in doubleheader GPAC action Sunday (March 24) at a neutral site in Brandon, S.D. Teyt Johnson belted a solo homer to ignite an avalanche of run scoring. Behind a masterful pitching performance by Jake Fosgett in game one and the fireworks supplied by Jesse Garcia in game two, the Bulldogs swept Dakota Wesleyan, 4-1 and 17-5.

The pair of wins completed a fruitful opening weekend of conference play for fifth-year head coach Ryan Dupic’s squad, which has jetted out to a 4-0 start within the GPAC (10-10 overall).

“Just really happy with the way our guys executed,” Dupic said. “Obviously Jake Fosgett pitched really well and we did a nice job defensively in that game. The first game their pitcher was good too. We knew that was going to be a dogfight. We eventually got things going and guys got comfortable. You play that first game and it’s tight and you find a way to win, it just eases things up a little bit. We feel like we have enough pitching depth that we get to that last game of the weekend and we like our chances.”

Standout individual performances were plentiful. Fosgett dazzled in the opener by striking out 11 hitters in a seven-inning complete game. The junior from Carlsbad, Calif., was one hitter away from a shutout when Tiger catcher Kyle Bailey struck for a solo homer. It was one of only four hits allowed by Fosgett, who also issued just one free pass. He has given up a single run over his last two starts.

The slugger of the day was Garcia, who put on a clinic in game two. Garcia delivered a two-run blast in the first, a three-run homer in the fourth and a two-run smash in the fifth while tying a school record for home runs in a single game with three. As a team, Concordia broke the previous program standard of six home runs in a single game by belting seven big flies. Not only did Garcia hit three, Keaton Candor drilled two homers and Christian Meza and Beau Dorman added one apiece.

The Bulldogs made a mockery of Dakota Wesleyan pitching by pounding out 20 hits in Sunday’s capper. Garcia collected four of them while also scoring four runs and driving in seven. In that same game, Meza notched four hits (three runs and two RBIs), Candor produced three (two runs, two RBIs) and Evan Bohman (three runs) and Wade Council (two runs) chipped in two apiece. Meza recorded five hits on the day to run his career total to 180 (two away from No. 5 on the program’s all-time list).

Johnson was the one who got it rolling in the top of the seventh of the opener. Then with two outs in the frame, Concordia tacked on three critical runs thanks to a clutch two-run single by Council and an RBI double by Meza. The late outburst provided plenty of security with Fosgett dealing on the mound.

Just a freshman and a native of El Cajon, Calif., Garcia became the fourth player in program history to go deep three times in a game. The feat had not been accomplished by a Bulldog since Mike Schoettlin did it in 2004.

“He has high expectations for himself,” Dupic said of Garcia. “We like guys who expect a lot out of themselves. He gives you consistently competitive at bats. The talent was always there. It was pretty clear from when we recruited him that he had very good pop. He also has very good bat-to-ball skills. Today was one of those days where it all came together for him.”

Tanner Wauhob tossed five innings to earn the win on the mound in game two. All four of the runs he surrendered came after Concordia had mounted a significant lead. Dupic then mixed and matched with Lukas Diehm, Treyton Nixon, Ryan Samuelson and Thomas Otte out of the bullpen.

Though most teams in the GPAC have played more conference games, every squad besides the Bulldogs has at least two league losses. Concordia will try to keep it rolling this Saturday when it hosts Briar Cliff (15-11, 6-2 GPAC) for a doubleheader beginning at 1 p.m. CT.