|Feb. 23||MidAmerica Nazarene University||Oklahoma City, Okla.||L, 8-9||0-1|
|Feb. 23||(8) Oklahoma City University||Oklahoma City, Okla.||L, 3-12||0-2|
|Feb. 24||(8) Oklahoma City University||Oklahoma City, Okla.||L, 1-2||0-3|
|Feb. 24||(8) Oklahoma City University||Oklahoma City, Okla.||W, 8-4||1-3|
|March 2||Dakota Wesleyan University||Tucson, Ariz.||W, 16-1||2-3|
|March 2||Concordia University St. Paul||Tucson, Ariz.||L, 3-4||2-4|
|March 3||Waldorf University||Tucson, Ariz.||W, 9-5||3-4|
|March 3||Waldorf University||Tucson, Ariz.||W, 6-4||4-4|
|March 4||St. Could State University||Tucson, Ariz.||L, 8-11||4-5|
|March 4||Concordia University St. Paul||Tucson, Ariz.||L, 3-6||4-6|
|March 7||Presentation College||Tucson, Ariz.||L, 5-6||4-7|
|March 7||Presentation College||Tucson, Ariz.||L, 1-3||4-8|
|March 8||Mount Marty College||Tucson, Ariz.||W, 7-0||5-8|
|March 8||Mount Marty College||Tucson, Ariz.||L, 5-19||5-9|
|March 9||Southwest Minnesota State University||Tucson, Ariz.||W, 10-8||6-9|
|March 9||Minot State University||Tucson, Ariz.||L, 3-16||6-10|
|March 22||*Mount Marty College||Yankton, S.D.||W, 4-2||7-10, 1-0|
|March 22||*Mount Marty College||Yankton, S.D.||W, 9-1||8-10, 2-0|
|March 24||*Dakota Wesleyan University||Brandon, S.D.||W, 4-1||9-10, 3-0|
|March 24||*Dakota Wesleyan University||Brandon, S.D.||W, 17-5||10-10, 4-0|
|March 27||*Midland University||Sioux City, Iowa||W, 8-3||11-10, 5-0|
|March 27||*Midland University||Sioux City, Iowa||W, 5-2||12-10, 6-0|
|March 31||*Hastings College||Hastings, Neb.||W, 11-0||13-10, 7-0|
|March 31||*Hastings College||Hastings, Neb.||W, 10-0||14-10, 8-0|
|April 2||*Briar Cliff University||Sioux City, Iowa||W, 1-0||15-10, 9-0|
|April 2||*Briar Cliff University||Sioux City, Iowa||W, 3-0||16-10, 10-0|
|April 6||*Doane University||Crete, Neb.||W, 4-3||17-10, 11-0|
|April 6||*Doane University||Crete, Neb.||W, 5-4||18-10, 12-0|
|April 7||*Doane University||Seward, Neb||W, 5-3||19-10, 13-0|
|April 7||*Doane University||Seward, Neb||W, 2-1||20-10, 14-0|
|April 9||*Midland University||Fremont, Neb.||W, 5-3||21-10, 15-0|
|April 9||*Midland University||Fremont, Neb.||L, 4-5||21-11, 15-1|
|April 10||*York College (1-9 inning)||Seward, Neb||L, 2-8||21-12|
|April 13||*University of Jamestown||Seward, Neb||W, 3-2||22-12, 16-1|
|April 13||*University of Jamestown||Seward, Neb||L, 5-6 (14 inn.)||22-13, 16-2|
|April 15||*Morningside College||Seward, Neb||W, 9-5||23-13, 17-2|
|April 15||*Morningside College||Seward, Neb||W, 8-4||24-13, 18-2|
|April 16||York College (1-9 inning)||York, Neb.||L, 6-10||24-14|
|April 18||*Northwestern College||Orange City, Iowa||W, 14-3||25-14, 19-2|
|April 18||*Northwestern College||Orange City, Iowa||W, 5-4 (9 inn.)||26-14, 20-2|
|April 19||Northwestern College||Orange City, Iowa||L, 3-5||26-15, 20-3|
|April 19||Northwestern College||Orange City, Iowa||L, 1-7||26-16, 20-4|
|April 26||*Dordt College||Seward, Neb||W, 13-7||27-16, 21-4|
|April 26||*Dordt College||Seward, Neb||L, 1-2||27-17, 21-5|
|April 27||*Dordt College||Seward, Neb||W, 3-0||28-17, 22-5|
|April 27||*Dordt College||Seward, Neb||W, 3-0||29-17, 23-5|
|May 2||Doane University||Seward, Neb||W, 12-1||30-17|
|May 3||Dakota Wesleyan University||Seward, Neb||W, 6-3||31-17|
|May 4||Doane University||Seward, Neb||W, 6-4||32-17|
|May 7||University of Jamestown (Championship)||Yankton, S.D.||L, 0-3||32-18|
|NAIA National Championship Opening Round|
|May 13||Clarke University (Iowa)||Henderson, Tenn.||W, 3-1||33-18|
|May 13||(12) Oklahoma Wesleyan University||Henderson, Tenn.||L, 6-14||33-19|
|May 14||(14) Texas Wesleyan University||Henderson, Tenn.||L, 1-2||33-20|
|1||Logan Ryan||SS||5-7||Sr.||R/R||Johnston, Iowa||Johnston|
|2||Thomas Sautel||3B||6-0||Sr.||R/R||Littleton, Colo.||Dakota Ridge|
|3||Ben Berg||C||6-1||Fr.||R/R||Carroll, Iowa||Kuemper|
|4||Luciano DePamphilis||2B/3B||6-1||So.||L/R||Vista, Calif.||Rancho Buena Vista|
|5||Beau Dorman||C||6-0||Jr.||R/R||Scottsdale, Ariz.||College of the Siskiyous|
|6||Evan Bohman||INF||5-9||Jr.||R/R||Appleton, Wis.||Appleton North|
|7||Teyt Johnson||INF||6-0||Fr.||L/R||Indianola, Iowa||West|
|8||Tanner Wauhob||RHP||5-11||Sr.||R/R||Sioux City, Iowa||Sioux City West|
|9||Adrian Cotton||C/P||6-4||So.||L/R||Gretna, Neb.||Gretna|
|10||Nicholas Boys||OF||6-3||Jr.||L/L||Brisbane, Austrailia||University of the Cumberlands|
|11||Carson Lindell||INF||5-9||Jr.||L/R||Mount Vernon, Wash.||Edmonds CC|
|12||Shane Whittaker||P||6-2||Fr.||R/R||San Diego, Calif.||San Marcos|
|13||Nathan Buckallew||P||5-11||So.||R/R||Urbandale, Iowa||Johnston|
|14||Keaton Candor||OF||5-11||So.||R/R||Merrill, Iowa||LeMars Community HS|
|15||Treyton Nixon||1B/P||6-6||So.||R/R||Council Bluffs, Iowa||Abraham Lincoln|
|16||Jared Schipper||RHP||6-3||Sr.||R/R||Omaha, Neb.||Millard West|
|17||Wade Council||OF/P||6-1||Jr.||L/L||Colorado Springs, Colo.||Pine Creek|
|18||Ryan Samuelson||P||6-8||So.||R/R||Omaha, Neb.||Gretna|
|19||Dylan Jacob||OF||6-5||So.||R/L||Escondido, Calif.||San Pasqual|
|20||Johnny May||OF||5-11||Sr.||R/R||Johnston, Iowa||Johnston|
|21||Jason Munsch||LHP||6-2||Jr.||L/L||Campbell, Calif.||Westmont|
|22||Christian Meza||INF||5-8||Sr.||R/R||Lakeside, Calif.||Christian|
|23||Trey Jacobson||INF||5-11||Fr.||R/R||Estherville, Iowa||Estherville Lincoln-Central|
|24||Peyton Scott||OF||5-9||So.||R/R||Mason City, Iowa||Newman|
|25||Cade Kleckner||OF||5-9||Fr.||R/R||Colorado Springs, Colo.||Pine Creek|
|26||Michael Coppens||P||6-2||So.||R/R||Riverside||Riverside City College|
|27||Keith Wolverton||OF||6-3||Sr.||R/R||Seward, Neb.||Seward / Colby CC|
|28||Jesse Garcia||INF||6-2||Fr.||R/R||El Cajon||Grossmont|
|29||Brandon Cue||C||5-6||So.||R/R||Fremont, Calif.||Irvington|
|31||Gerard Dunning||OF||5-6||Fr.||R/R||Grand Island, Neb.||Grand Island|
|32||Thomas Otte||INF/P||6-1||Fr.||R/R||Lincoln, Neb.||Indianaola|
|33||Lukas Diehm||P||6-2||Jr.||R/R||Las Vegas, Nev.||Olympic College|
|34||Clayton Holcomb||RHP||6-2||Jr.||L/R||Johnston, Iowa||Johnston|
|35||Jake Fosgett||RHP||6-3||Jr.||R/R||Carlsbad, Calif.||San Dieguito Academy|
|36||Sasha Jabusch||P||5-10||Jr.||L/L||Kelso, Wash.||Clark College|
|37||Dylan DuRee||RHP||6-0||Sr.||R/R||Elkhorn, Neb.||Elkhorn South|
|38||Christian Clear||INF||6-0||So.||L/L||Alliance, Neb.||Platte Valley|
|Logan Adam||OUT/P||6-3||Fr.||L/L||Crete, Neb.||Crete|
|Matt Armstrong||C/OF||6-0||Sr.||R/R||Lakin, Kan.||Lakin|
|Brayden Becker||P||5-8||Fr.||R/R||Sabetha, Kan.||Sabetha|
|Adam Braude||UTIL||6-0||So.||R/R||Cave Creek, Ariz.||Cactus Shadows|
|Johnny Bryce||RHP||6-3||Sr.||R/R||Phoenix, Ariz.||Phoenix Christian|
|Russell Bunting||RHP||5-8||Sr.||R/R||Kingsburg, Calif.||Kingsburg|
|Dalton Cain||P||6-3||Fr.||R/R||Overland Park, Kan.||Blue Valley West|
|Blake Culbert||C||6-3||So.||R/R||Garden Grove, Calif.||Rancho Alamitos|
|Connor Ganyo||RHP||6-4||Jr.||R/R||Omaha, Neb.||Skutt Catholic|
|Michael Higley||P||Fr.||R/R||North Richland Hills||Birdville|
|Caden Kratz||P||6-2||Fr.||R/R||Mason City, Iowa||Newman|
|Noah Janssen||OF||5-7||Fr.||L/R||Johnson, Iowa||Johnston|
|Jason Jensen||UTIL||5-10||Fr.||R/R||Dorchester, Neb.||Dorchester|
|Ryan Kollbaum||OF||6-1||So.||R/R||Concordia, Mo.||Saint Paul Lutheran|
|Benjamin Kuefner||INF||5-10||Jr.||R/R||Lexington, Neb.||Lexington|
|Benjamin Larsen||INF||6-3||Fr.||R/R||Lee's Summin, Mo.||Baymore-Peculiar|
|Noah Larson||INF||5-11||Fr.||R/R||Gothenburg, Neb.||Gothenburg Public|
|Tanner Matt||C||5-11||Fr.||R/R||Bellevue, Neb.||Bellevue East|
|Carter Morgan||OF/P||6-4||Jr.||L/R||Charlotte, N.C.||Olympic|
|Jacob Morse||OF/P||6-2||Fr.||R/R||Columbus, Neb.||Scotus Central Catholic|
|Samuel Otte||INF/OF||6-3||Sr.||R/L||Lincoln, Neb.||Lincoln Lutheran|
|Bryce Peterson||OF/UTIL||6-1||Jr.||R/R||Lincoln, Neb.|
|Jayson Peterson||P||6-2||Fr.||L/L||Arvada, Colo||Arvada Senior|
|Jesse Pugh||INF||5-8||Jr.||R/R||Steamboat Springs, Colo.||Steamboat Springs|
|Micah Ramage||C||5-11||Jr.||R/R||Pasadena, Texas||Pasadena Memorial|
|Braden Sindt||OF||6-1||So.||R/R||Scottsbluff, Neb.||Scottsbluff|
|Caden Springer||P||6-0||Fr.||R/R||Wichita, Kan.||Pratt|
|Drew Ward||P||6-2||So.||R/R||Cypress, Texas||Cypress Christian|
Ryan Dupic, Head Coach (5th Year)
Bryce Berg, Assistant Coach
Jake Adams, Graduate Assistant Coach
Jan. 10, 2019
SEWARD, Neb. – Official practices for the Concordia University baseball team got underway this week. On Thursday (Jan. 10), head coach Ryan Dupic’s squad learned it had checked in at No. 5 in the 2019 GPAC Baseball Preseason Coaches’ Poll. The Bulldogs totaled 64 points in the poll and even picked up one first-place vote.
The 2019 campaign will mark the fifth in Dupic’s tenure as head coach. After capturing a GPAC regular-season title and NAIA national tournament berth in 2017 while breaking the program single-season wins record, Concordia slipped back into a tie for sixth place in the final 2018 conference standings. The Bulldogs finished at 25-22 overall and at 13-13 in GPAC play last spring.
Concordia is optimistic about a rebound in 2019 with the bulk of its top position players back in the fold. Four Bulldogs return who garnered some form of all-conference recognition last season: senior second baseman Christian Meza (first team), junior outfielder/pitcher Wade Council (second team), senior third baseman Thomas Sautel (second team) and junior right-handed pitcher Jake Fosgett (honorable mention). Dupic will look to replace the team’s Nos. 1 and 2 starting pitchers from 2018.
The 2019 season is set to open up Feb. 23 in Oklahoma City, Okla. On that date, Concordia is scheduled to play both MidAmerica Nazarene University (Kan.) and No. 8 Oklahoma City University. The GPAC regular season will consist of 28 games. The Bulldogs will host new GPAC member Jamestown, the league’s preseason favorite, on April 13. The Jimmies were the lone GPAC team to receive votes in the NAIA preseason national poll. The full 2019 schedule can be viewed HERE.
*First-place votes in parentheses
1. Jamestown – 91 (4)
2. Midland – 83 (2)
3. Northwestern – 77 (4)
4. Doane – 68
5. Concordia – 64 (1)
6. Morningside – 61
7. Mount Marty – 57
8. Hastings – 41
9. Briar Cliff – 34
10. Dakota Wesleyan – 17
11. Dordt – 12
Jan. 17, 2019
Christian Meza all but scoffs at the notion that he would have grown up playing something other than baseball. Fittingly, the San Diego, Calif., native often appears to be the player on the diamond having more fun than anyone else, even if that diamond is situated in the middle of Nebraska with temperatures below what he had gotten used to back home.
The way Meza puts it, baseball was unavoidable, but that’s not a complaint. His father Larry Meza made a big impression in this regard.
“Ever since I was born my dad put a baseball in my hand,” Christian said. “That’s pretty much it. He didn’t really give me another option. All I really knew was baseball ever since I was born.”
Now entering his senior season as a star second baseman for head coach Ryan Dupic, Meza is the heartbeat of the Concordia lineup. The Christian High School product batted .405 and landed first team All-GPAC accolades in his junior campaign. A year earlier, Meza helped lead the Bulldog baseball program to its first conference championship in more than 30 years. With another big season, he may even make a run at the school’s all-time hits record.
The statistics and the accolades aside, Meza is a valued member of the program for many reasons. He carries the type of confidence that rubs off on his teammates. Beyond that, Meza helped open the door for more Californians to play baseball at Concordia. When Dupic arrived in Seward, the roster did not contain a single player from The Golden State. The 2019 squad is 10 strong in Californians.
Says Dupic, “Christian is a very impactful player in our program. He has a high level of confidence in himself and is a tough competitor, and when he is at his best the others feed off of him and exhibit those characteristics as well. He knows exactly who he is and is an authentic guy. What you see is what you get and he’s comfortable in his own skin.”
Meza may have been born to play baseball, but Concordia did not enter his mind until late in his high school career. Dupic wanted to make inroads in California and developed a new contact who recommended Meza. Based on Meza’s preference for the mild weather offered by Southern California, Concordia probably wasn’t going to be the right choice. Or maybe not.
When Meza began dialogue with Dupic, what he heard was a breath of fresh air. Dupic was just getting started on trying to build a foundation for a program that had experienced plenty of lows in terms of wins and losses.
“Honestly it was pretty random,” Meza said. “I didn’t think about leaving California until the offers started to be shortened. Everything just clicked. Coach Dupic reached out. When I came on a visit it just felt different, especially with Coach Dupic. I just felt like he really cared about my career here. It felt genuine more than any other coach. That’s kind of how I ended up here.”
Meza brought the type of attitude Dupic wanted in order to shake up the culture within the dugout. Simply put, Meza is a winning player. He’s competitive on and off the field. He’s the type of player you want at the plate with the game on the line. He may not come up with the big hit in every one of those types of situations, but he will never be afraid of the moment.
Every team can use someone with Meza’s swagger. He also helps keep the mood light. In one instance last season, Meza put a sandwich on top of the head of a teammate during a postgame interview.
“I guess I was just born with it,” Meza said of his confident ways. “Anything I play – video games, board games – I’m trying to win. I’m trying to be the best. I really don’t know. My parents are kind of that way too. They always want to beat me in everything I do against them. It just kind of grew on me.”
Meza has a little added motivation knowing that even though they are more than 1,500 miles apart, somewhere Meza’s little brother Robbie is watching online, perhaps even trying emulate big brother. The distance from his little brother is something Meza mentions as the toughest thing about being away from home. Says Meza, “He’s playing baseball as well. That kind of kills me not being able to see him grow up. He and his friends are always watching the games. That drives me for sure.”
Robbie should be proud of what Christian has become. He’s so reliable that Dupic can relax and state simply, “Meza is Meza.” There’s a comfort for Dupic in knowing he can ink Meza’s name in at second base and near the top of the lineup every game. He knows what he’s going to get. Bad at bats are rare for Meza, who has struck out only 52 times in 459 career at bats.
For Meza, the approach is simple: try not to think too much. He’s not one to walk a lot, but it works for someone so adept at putting the bat on the ball. His 2018 season looks even more impressive when you consider how rough the weather was last spring.
“I don’t really have an approach,” Meza said. “I go up there just trying to have fun and be relaxed. I just swing the bat whenever the ball is in the strike zone. I really don’t have much of a plan to it. A lot of people overthink things so I just try to make it as easy as possible.”
When he’s done striking baseballs at Concordia, Meza seems to think the pull of home will reel him back in. He still doesn’t like the cold weather, but Meza has developed an affinity for Nebraska Raising Cane’s restaurants.
Whatever comes after graduation is not foremost on his mind. Meza doesn’t have to look far into the future to see the start of his senior baseball season. That thought makes him feel warmer, even on a January day in Nebraska.
Says Meza, “I’m excited to step out there for the last time. I just want to end with a bang. That’s pretty much it.”
Jan. 23, 2019
Head coach: Ryan Dupic (113-89, 5th year)
2018 record: 25-22 overall, 13-13 GPAC (T-6th)
Key returners: Keaton Candor (OF); Wade Council (OF/LHP); Jake Fosgett (RHP); Dylan Jacob (OF); Christian Meza (2B); Jason Munsch (LHP); Logan Ryan (SS); Thomas Sautel (3B); Tanner Wauhob (RHP).
Key losses: Kaleb Geiger (1B); Nick Little (RHP); Cade Moring (LHP).
Key newcomers: Ben Berg (C); Nick Boys (OF); Michael Coppens (RHP); Beau Dorman (C); Jesse Garcia (1B); Sasha Jabusch (LHP); Thomas Otte (RHP); Shane Whittaker (RHP).
2018 GPAC all-conference: Nick Little (first team; pitcher of the year); Christian Meza (first team); Wade Council (second team); Thomas Sautel (second team); Jake Fosgett (honorable mention); Cade Moring (honorable mention).
The 2018 Concordia baseball team had the difficult task of following up an unforgettable 2017 championship season. After tying for sixth place in the GPAC standings last spring, the Bulldogs will enter a new campaign a bit off the radar in terms of outsider expectations. Despite a bit of drop off a year ago, Concordia remains in good hands under the leadership of fifth-year head coach Ryan Dupic.
In Dupic’s tenure, the program has gone from hoping to truly believing it can compete for the league championship each season. In order to be at or near a championship level, the Bulldogs know there are things that must improve. The team’s new leadership group is already paying dividends.
“It’s going to be a huge factor,” Dupic said. “I think we’re in an age where we want to quantify everything and I don’t know how to quantify leadership. When I look back at the teams that have been successful that I’ve been fortunate enough to be part of, they’ve had pretty good leadership. I think it’s going to be a big deal as we move forward. I think it will keep us more in alignment and more on the same page amongst coaches and players. It’s really created a sense of family.”
That family expects a lot out of itself. Concordia wants to look more like the team that started last season by winning 14 of its first 21 games while repeating that kind of performance throughout the balance of the spring. All-conference position players return in the form outfielder/pitcher Wade Council (.339 BA, .428 OBP, 6 HR), second baseman Christian Meza (.405 BA, .472 OBP, 14 doubles) and third baseman Thomas Sautel (.371 BA, .441 OBP, 5 HR). They will anchor a lineup that went from 6.67 runs scored per game in 2017 to 6.25 per game in 2018.
As long as that trio remains healthy, the offense figures to be productive. Meza is adept at spraying the ball to the gaps and is one of the GPAC’s most reliable contact hitters. Council (who can also be used as a lefty hurler) and Sautel both made big jumps in 2018 as they got better at driving the ball. Out of the leadoff spot, Council actually led the team in home runs and slugging percentage (.548).
“They were all-conference players last year. Not much has changed,” Dupic said. “The neat thing when you get guys who are upperclassmen is they kind of know who they are by now. They’ve been through things. Christian knows who he is. Thomas knows who he is. They’re consistent in the way that they come to practice, the way they prepare and their personalities. With their daily habits and routines, they know how this goes. There are not a lot of surprises with those guys. That’s what we like.”
A host of others bring starting experience, including sophomores Keaton Candor and Dylan Jacob, who were fixtures in the lineup as freshmen. The deep pool of veterans extends to the likes of first baseman Evan Bohman, outfielder Johnny May and shortstop Logan Ryan, a three-year starter. Candor and Jacob have the potential to be big bats. They aspire to make the type of advancement shown by Council from freshman to sophomore year. First, Jacob hopes to rid himself of a hand injury.
Meza likes the look of this lineup. Says the San Diego native, “I think we’re right there. We have a lot of returning position players. I think our lineup is going to be very dangerous. We have a lot of young guys who are going to surprise some people this time around. The seniors have been there for four years now so we’re ready to go. I think this is our year.”
As far as the pitching staff, Concordia is moving on without last year’s Nos. 1 and 2 starters: Nick Little, the 2018 GPAC Pitcher of the Year, and Cade Moring, who owns the program’s single-season strikeout record. Despite those departures, the staff appears solid with Jake Fosgett, last season’s ace reliever, moving into the starting rotation. Over 26 career relief appearances, Fosgett has a strikeout rate of 11.2 per nine innings. Now the Bulldogs hope to get more value out of the slender righty with the snap dragon curveball.
The staff also features returnees in lefty Jason Munsch (4.91 ERA, 36.2 IP) and righty Tanner Wauhob (11.05 ERA, 14.2 IP). Both Munsch and Wauhob are expected to be significantly better than what last season’s numbers looked like. Said Dupic of Wauhob, “Tanner has made as much progress as any player in the program from the time the season ended to this point. He had a terrific summer and is a great leader. He’s done a really nice job. I would put Jason Munsch right there with Tanner in terms of the progress he’s made.”
The staff should also get a boost from left-hander Sasha Jabusch, a transfer from Clark College (Wash.). Dupic describes Jabusch as a “talented kid with good stuff.” What’s not entirely certain is who will catch Jabusch and company. The battle is mostly between freshman Ben Berg (younger brother of assistant coach Bryce Berg) of Carroll, Iowa, and junior Beau Dorman, a transfer from College of the Siskiyous. The combo of Berg and Dorman will be counted upon to strengthen the catching position both offensively and defensively.
There are plenty of other newcomers capable of making an impact, such as outfielder Nick Boys, right-handed pitcher Michael Coppens, first baseman Jesse Garcia and right-handed pitchers Thomas Otte and Shane Whittaker. Dupic will certainly be on the lookout for reliable bullpen options with Fosgett now in a different role. Unfortunately, Nathan Buckallew (12 appearances in 2018) will be sidelined by injury. That leaves Dylan DuRee (4.97 ERA, 12.2 IP) as the returner with the most ‘pen usage in 2018.
Of course, the pitching staff will be helped if the defense behind it can tighten things up after a rough season in that department. The errors piled up a rate that won’t be considered acceptable moving forward.
With all factors accounted for, Dupic believes he will put a very competitive squad on the field. The road to winning a GPAC title got a little bit more challenging with the addition of a well-respected Jamestown program, but at least one league head coach thought enough of the Bulldogs to give them a first-place vote in the preseason poll.
“I think it’s a fair thing,” Dupic said of the preseason polls. “We finished tied for sixth in the league last year and we were picked fifth (this year). Most years those predictions are more or less based on where you finished the year before. We’re probably right about where we ought to be based on where we finished a year ago and how that process works. In terms of where we actually finish, I expect we’ll be better than that. That’s the expectation of our program. I think our players most certainly want to be better than that. With all of that said, I’m just focused on today.”
The 2019 season will get started in Oklahoma City on Feb. 23 with a game apiece against MidAmerica Nazarene University (Kan.) and No. 8 Oklahoma City University. The first home doubleheader is slated for March 17.
Feb. 23, 2019
OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. – The Concordia University baseball team escaped the Nebraska blizzard while opening up its 2019 season in Oklahoma City, Okla., on Saturday (Feb. 23). Despite a home run apiece on the day from Evan Bohman, Keaton Candor and Luciano DePamphilis, the Bulldogs dropped two seven-inning contests. Concordia was defeated, 9-8, by MidAmerica Nazarene University (Kan.) and, 12-3, by eighth-ranked Oklahoma City.
Fifth-year head coach Ryan Dupic’s program was fortunate not to have attempted to schedule any games up north this February. Instead, the Bulldogs found temperatures in the 50s as they rang in 2019 against quality competition.
“It exposes you,” said Dupic of the challenging first weekend. “When we make mistakes defensively or walk guys, they make you pay. The reality is that when you play good competition you can’t make those mistakes. You have to field the baseball and you have to throw strikes. Oklahoma City made all the plays. That’s the difference. I hope that we can learn from it and keep getting better.”
Concordia is a bit more short-handed than it would like to be with the season now underway. It has to roll with who is available. On Saturday, Dupic gave the ball to two hurlers who made their first career collegiate starts – junior Jake Fosgett and sophomore Adrian Cotton. Fosgett has moved into the rotation after serving as the team’s closer last season. He allowed nine runs (six earned) on 10 hits over four innings versus MidAmerica Nazarene. However, Fosgett flashed good stuff, as the eight strikeouts indicate.
With second team All-GPAC third baseman Thomas Sautel out with a hand injury, DePamphilis got the nod at the hot corner. He delivered a 3-for-3, six-RBI performance in the season opener. His two-run blast in the sixth inning brought the Bulldogs within two (9-7). He also forced in a run in the seventh by taking a hit-by-pitch. The Pioneers (1-3) survived by getting Ben Berg to ground out with the bases loaded.
Bohman also enjoyed a nice day at the plate. He went 4-for-7 with two doubles, a homer and three runs scored. Catcher Beau Dorman added a pair of doubles and right fielder Wade Council reached base a total of four times out of the leadoff spot.
“I thought we hit the ball pretty well throughout the day today,” Dupic said. “We had some good at bats up and down the lineup. It’s hard to say you’re happy when you lose twice, but I am glad that we played. We need to get out and play right now.”
Cotton was charged with eight earned runs in 2.1 innings. He was plagued by seven free passes. The Concordia bullpen combined to toss 5.2 innings without surrendering an earned run on the day. Thomas Otte logged two scoreless frames in the first game. Jared Schipper struck out six hitters in 3.1 innings of work.
The Bulldogs equaled Oklahoma City with eight hits apiece. The Stars are now 13-1 having played their entire schedule thus far at their home park Jim Wade Stadium. Oklahoma City is coming off a 51-10 season in 2018. Meanwhile, MidAmerica Nazarene went 24-20 overall last season.
The Bulldogs will remain in Oklahoma City for a Sunday twin bill against the host Stars. First pitch is slated for 10 a.m. CST. Transfer Sasha Jabusch is expected to make his Concordia debut on the mound. For live coverage, check out Oklahoma City’s Stretch Internet portal.
Feb. 24, 2019
OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. – A challenging season opening weekend in Oklahoma City continued on Sunday (Feb. 24) for the Concordia University baseball team. While the Bulldogs came up a run short in a 2-1 loss in front end of the doubleheader, they accomplished a rare feat in game two. They handed eighth-ranked Oklahoma City University a home defeat. With the help of Wade Council’s bat and Tanner Wauhob’s right arm, Concordia took the final game of the series, 8-4.
The game two victory helped salvage the weekend for fifth-year head coach Ryan Dupic’s squad. The Bulldogs are now 1-3 overall. Two of the three weekend losses came by one-run margins. Fortunately for Concordia, it gets to hit the road back to Seward after putting a win on the board.
“It was a big deal,” Dupic said. “We know we’re playing good teams down here, but it would not have been fun to leave having not played better baseball today. We weren’t satisfied with the way we played on the first day. We played a lot better today. Beating the eighth-ranked team in the country has to give our guys some confidence.”
Dupic certainly came away pleased with the pitching performances he watched on Sunday. Lefty Sasha Jabusch and righty Tanner Wauhob were tasked with going against a Stars club that led the NAIA last season with an average of more than 10 runs per game. Jabusch and Wauhob combined to limit Oklahoma City (14-2) to six runs on 10 hits over 13 innings (two complete games).
While making his first start of the season, Wauhob actually held the Stars without a hit until they produced back-to-back singles to begin the bottom of the fifth of game two. It was the only inning Wauhob was unable to work himself out of trouble. Wauhob shook off a three-run homer by Tyler Williams to work scoreless frames in the sixth and seventh. In his seven-inning complete game, Wauhob allowed four earned runs on five hits and two walks. He struck out seven hitters.
Jabusch, a transfer from Clark College (Wash.), pitched well enough to be a winner in game one. He scattered five hits and four walks over six innings while striking out six. He tightened things up after Oklahoma City pushed two runs across in the first inning.
“Sasha is a guy who has a lot of ability,” Dupic said. “He loves to compete and he’s fun to watch pitch because of that. He found his rhythm there in the second inning. I was really pleased with him and Tanner was rolling today. He had a blip in the middle of the game, but he does such a good job in terms of his resilience. After the home run you could just tell. He came right back at it.”
In the game two triumph, Concordia rapped out nine hits and drew five walks and four hit-by-pitches. At the top of the lineup, the Bulldogs know they can count on Council. He reached base nine times over the weekend’s four games. In the final contest of the trip, Council went 3-for-4 with a triple, a run and four RBIs. Carson Lindell doubled and scored on Council’s triple in the third. Dylan Jacob also added a run-scoring double in the fifth.
The breakout in game two was a welcome sight after Concordia had been limited to only two hits in game one (one apiece from Lindell and Christian Meza). A first team All-GPAC selection in 2018, Meza moved to third base on Sunday, as opposed to his customary spot at second. Last season’s standout third baseman, Thomas Sautel, continues to recover from a hand injury.
The game two result marked the program’s first win over a nationally-ranked opponent since the Bulldogs defeated then No. 16 Jamestown in Tucson, Ariz., on March 5, 2017.
Tucson will be the location the next time Concordia takes the diamond. It is scheduled to play 12 games at the Tucson Invitational, March 2-9. The Bulldogs will even take on a fellow Concordia in Concordia University, St. Paul during the trip.
Feb. 27, 2019
SEWARD, Neb. – The Concordia University baseball team will again depart from Nebraska in order to resume the 2019 season. The campaign began this past weekend with four games over two days in Oklahoma City, Okla. Now head coach Ryan Dupic’s squad gets set to play 12 times from March 2 – 9 at the Tucson Invitational. The Kino Sports Complex in Tucson, Ariz., serves as the host venue.
More details about event can be found HERE. Due to the games being played at neutral sites, live coverage will be limited. For updates, follow @cunebulldogs and @cunebaseball on Twitter. Game recaps will be available on Concordia athletics website at the end of each day of action.
While in Arizona, the Bulldogs will actually play three games against GPAC opponents and five against NCAA Division II foes. The run against NCAA D-II foes will feature two matchups with sister school Concordia University, St. Paul. In addition, Concordia will go head-to-head with nonconference NAIA opponents in Presentation College (S.D.) and Waldorf University (Iowa). The Bulldog varsity roster includes one Arizona native: junior catcher Beau Dorman.
Dupic hopes to get his team a bit healthier after opening the campaign a bit short-handed. Concordia went 1-3 last week in Oklahoma City with the victory being an 8-4 upset of the eighth-ranked Stars. Leadoff man Wade Council starred by reaching base nine times in 16 plate appearances. He went 3-for-4 and drove in four runs in the win over Oklahoma City. Dupic also got solid pitching performances from starters Sasha Jabusch and Tanner Wauhob. On the season’s opening day, Evan Bohman, Keaton Candor and Luciano DePamphilis connected for a home run apiece.
Following play in Tucson, the Bulldogs hope to take on Midland in a four-game weekend series, March 16-17. The first doubleheader that weekend is slated to take place in Fremont before action shifts to Seward.
Concordia Tucson Invitational Schedule
Saturday, March 2 vs. Dakota Wesleyan University, 3 p.m. MT / 4 p.m. CT (Field 7)
Saturday, March 2 vs. Concordia University, St. Paul, 6:30 p.m. MT / 7:30 p.m. CT (Field 7)
Sunday, March 3 vs. Waldorf University (Iowa) (DH), 3 p.m. MT / 4 p.m. CT (Field 7)
Monday, March 4 vs. St. Cloud State University (Minn.), 3 p.m. MT / 4 p.m. CT (Stadium)
Monday, March 4 vs. Concordia University, St. Paul, 6:30 p.m. MT / 7:30 p.m. CT (Stadium)
Thursday, March 7 vs. Presentation College (S.D.) (DH), 10 a.m. MT / 11 a.m. CT (Field 7)
Friday, March 8 vs. Mount Marty College (DH), 10 a.m. MT / 11 a.m. CT (Field 7)
Saturday, March 9 vs. Minot State University (N.D.), 9 a.m. MT / 10 a.m. CT (Field 5)
Saturday, March 9 vs. SW Minnesota State University, 12:30 p.m. MT / 1:30 p.m. CT (Field 5)
Mar. 2, 2019
TUCSON, Ariz. – The spring break road trip in Tucson, Ariz., began on Saturday (March 2) for the Concordia University baseball team, which began the 2019 season a week earlier in Oklahoma City. The Bulldogs got the Tucson Invitational started by pummeling Dakota Wesleyan, 16-1, before dropping a 4-3 decision at the hands of NCAA Division II Concordia University, St. Paul. CUNE departed by bus on Thursday in preparation for the invite.
Fifth-year head coach Ryan Dupic’s squad now stands at 2-4 overall in what has been a challenging early season slate. The Bulldogs also own a win over eighth-ranked Oklahoma City University.
“When you come down here out of the gate playing in Tucson it’s so beautiful it’s hard not to be ready to play,” Dupic said. “I thought the guys did a really good job offensively. We got it going right away in that first game. We just put some good at bats together, stayed patient, drew a lot of walks and had some guys get some big swings.”
Five CUNE players collected exactly two hits as part of the outburst in the Tucson opener. Christian Meza drove in five runs while belting one of the team’s three home runs. Meza belted a three-run bomb while Keaton Candor and Evan Bohman both added two-run blasts. The Bulldogs had pretty much put the game away by the end of the third inning when they led 13-0. CUNE pounded out 14 hits and took nine walks while keeping the merry-go-round spinning.
Transfer Sasha Jabusch put together another solid performance while making the second start of his Bulldog career on the mound. He worked around four hits and four walks to limit the Tigers to one run in a winning effort. Jabusch struck out five hitters. Treyton Nixon and Lukas Diehm both worked a scoreless inning in relief of Jabusch.
One rough inning cost CUNE in the night cap. Bulldog starting pitcher Jason Munsch fanned seven hitters but walked two in a four-run fourth inning for the Bears, who took advantage of two Bulldog errors. Munsch was chased from the game in the fourth. He went 3.2 innings. Only one of the four runs he allowed were earned.
It was a big day for Bohman, who went 4-for-8 with two RBIs. Meza knocked in five runs in the win over Dakota Wesleyan. In that first game, Bohman, Beau Dorman, Wade Council, Luciano DePamphilis and Logan Ryan recorded two hits apiece. Out of the cleanup spot, Jesse Garcia enjoyed a 3-for-8, two-RBI day.
Saturday’s evening clash marked the season opener for Concordia St. Paul. The Golden Bears are coming off a 26-16 season in 2018. The Bulldogs went up against CSP ace pitcher Louie Varland, who struck out eight hitters in five innings of work.
“He’s really good,” Dupic said. “He’s probably upper 80s into 90s. I thought we competed really well and had some good at bats. We just had one inning get away from us. We walked two guys and had two plays we should have made. We’re not happy to be on the losing side, but I’m really glad we’re playing a team like that. They’re a good quality ball club. It’s good for us to be in a tight ballgame like that. I can see us betting better.”
The 12-game swing at the Tucson Invitational will continue on Sunday with a doubleheader versus Waldorf University (Iowa). First pitch is set for 3 p.m. MT / 4 p.m. CT. The games will be played on Field 7 at the Kino Sports Complex.
Mar. 3, 2019
TUCSON, Ariz. – The Concordia University baseball team is beginning to develop some early season confidence, now a winner in four of its last five after sweeping a doubleheader from Waldorf University (Iowa) as the Tucson Invitational continued on Sunday evening (March 3). The Bulldogs won by scores of 9-5 and 6-4 while in action at the Kino Sports Complex in Tucson.
This was day two of the spring break trip for fifth-year head coach Ryan Dupic’s squad. Concordia has moved to 4-4 overall.
“You could see it after the games. The guys were really energized,” Dupic said. “I’m really happy to see them playing well and getting some wins under our belt. We’re headed in the right direction. I think the team just has a nice vibe right now. They’re fun to be around. They’re a good group of guys. We still have a lot of baseball left down here to play and a lot of work to do to get better.”
In Sunday’s opener, Jake Fosgett got the nod on the mound and fired the first six innings before giving way to Michael Coppens for the seventh. Coppens tossed a 1-2-3 final frame to lock down the victory.
Fosgett and Coppens were supported well by the offensive attack. Wade Council, Carson Lindell and Christian Meza each had two hits. Evan Bohman also delivered a three-run homer. Dupic gave credit to a bench that contributed at the plate and in the field.
In game two, the Bulldogs fought back from a 4-1 deficit and tied the game with a three-run fifth. Keaton Candor emerged with a two-out, two-run single in the sixth to push across the deciding tallies. Beau Dorman and Logan Ryan notched a pair of hits apiece. Tanner Wauhob recorded his second complete game in as many starts while earning the win on the mound. The second contest ended with Johnny May making a sprawling catch into the left centerfield gap for the final out.
The Bulldogs will play twice for the third day in a row with a pair of NCAA Division II opponents on the docket for Monday’s go-round at the Tucson Invite. Dupic’s squad will take on St. Cloud State University (Min.) at 3 p.m. MT / 4 p.m. CT before capping the day against Concordia University St. Paul at 6:30 p.m. MT / 7:30 p.m. CT. CUNE will try to avenge a 4-3 loss that came against the Golden Bears on Saturday.
Mar. 4, 2019
TUCSON, Ariz. – Halfway through its Tucson Invitational slate, the Concordia University baseball team has come up empty when faced with NCAA Division II competition. The Bulldogs were back at it in Arizona on Monday (March 4) in what amounted to losses by scores of 11-8 to Minot State University (N.D.) and 6-3 to Concordia University, St. Paul. Both games were played at the Kino Sports Complex Stadium.
Fifth-year head coach Ryan Dupic’s squad had won four of its previous five contests. CUNE is now 4-6 overall (3-3 on the road trip).
“We just didn’t pitch well enough to beat really good teams like that,” Dupic said. “I was really proud of the position players. We fell behind and that got us back in it in the first game. We faced good pitching in the second game and they had really quality at bats. We made some plays and did a really nice job. We just made too many mistakes from a pitching standpoint. That was frustrating.”
The Bulldogs fell in their first game despite a home run apiece from Wade Council and Jesse Garcia and an 11-hit performance as a team. One bad inning was especially damaging. The Huskies put up seven runs on four hits and five walks in the third. St. Cloud State (6-1) led 10-1 after five innings, prior to Concordia making a comeback push by tallying two runs in the sixth, three in the seventh and two in the eighth.
Treyton Nixon was a bright spot among pitchers. In a bullpen game to cap the night, Nixon delivered 3.2 innings of shutout ball against Golden Bear hitters.
“He’s a guy who has come back from a lot,” Dupic said. “He’s had multiple ACL surgeries and a heart problem. He redshirted last year and tried to get himself healthy. He’s done that and made some progress. He had a nice outing today. I hope he can continue to improve.”
CUNE battled back from deficits of 2-0 and 3-2 to tie the score against Concordia-St. Paul (4-0). The Bulldogs got even at 2-2 in the bottom of the seventh when Logan Ryan delivered his second sac fly of the night. Then down 3-2 in the eighth, Garcia brought Meza home with a double. Unfortunately, the Golden Bears put up three runs in the ninth after two were out.
Evan Bohman, Luciano DePamphilis, Dylan Jacob and Christian Meza each had two hits in the first game on Monday. Council, DePamphilis and Garcia all drove in two runs in that same contest. In the late game, Council produced two hits, including a double, while Johnny May singled, walked and scored a run.
Neither Bulldog starter lasted more than 2.2 innings on this evening. Dupic used eight different pitchers. Despite some of the struggles, Concordia pitchers did manage a combined 14 strikeouts over the two games.
The Bulldogs will enjoy the next two days off before returning to action in Tucson on Thursday, Friday and Saturday. Concordia will go up against Presentation College (S.D.) in a doubleheader set to get started at 10 a.m. MT / 11 a.m. CT on Thursday.
Mar. 7, 2019
TUCSON, Ariz. – The Concordia University baseball team was just a bit off on Thursday (March 7) while in action in Tucson, Ariz. Three errors and game one and a two-run homer by Johnny Radomskiy in game two proved fatal for the Bulldogs. Concordia came away from the doubleheader with losses by scores of 6-5 and 3-1 at the hands of Presentation College (S.D.).
Those results mean that fifth-year head coach Ryan Dupic’s squad will attempt to halt a four-game skid when it returns to the diamond on Friday. The Bulldogs now stand at 4-8 overall.
“Honestly it just really wasn’t our day today,” Dupic said. “It was one of those days where they got some things going, got some big hits at big times and had some calls go against us. That certainly wasn’t the deciding factor. It was one of those things where we couldn’t find the hole at times and they did. You have to be able to move on and go to the next day.”
From an offensive standpoint, Concordia seemed to play well enough to win the opener. It outhit the Saints, 11-8, while spurred by Luciano DePamphilis’ three-hit, two-RBI performance. Meanwhile, Evan Bohman and Beau Dorman both turned in 2-for-4 efforts and Keaton Candor belted his third home run of the season. Christian Meza added a base hit and two stolen bases.
DePamphilis and company nearly came all the back from a 6-0 deficit. DePamphilis delivered a two-out, two-run single to get the Bulldogs within a run. Then with runners at first and third, Dylan Jacob struck out looking for the game's final out.
On the mound, Bulldog game one starter Sasha Jabusch got into trouble in the second inning when Presentation put three runs on the board. The key hit was a two-run double by Austin Kominek. Jabusch exited after four innings. His line included six runs allowed (three earned) on five hits and four walks. Jabusch was also hurt by an error on a potential double play grounder. In relief, Ryan Samuelson fired three scoreless frames to keep his side in the game.
The big hit eluded Concordia in game two. The Bulldogs tied the contest, 1-1, in the top of the third with the help of an error. The score remained that way until Radomskiy’s home run in the fifth. It was one of the few mistakes Jason Munsch made in a six-inning complete game. He surrendered three earned runs on four hits and three walks. Munsch fanned seven hitters.
Meza was 2-for-2 with a walk in his three plate appearances on Thursday. His career hit count stands at 169, placing him seventh on the program’s all-time hit list (the school record is 234 by Zak Goodrich).
The Bulldogs may not be all that far away from having things click. Of their eight losses, five have come by margins of one or two runs. Now they have to find a way to flip those losses in their favor.
“We made pitches today, we just had situations where we made mistakes in a big spot where they would capitalize,” Dupic said. “Presentation really executed well and we a couple mistakes defensively or a couple times we walked a leadoff guy. We weren’t able to get away with those things. Our guys did a good job fighting back though. It was just a little too late in that first game.”
Concordia will meet up with conference foe Mount Marty in Tucson on Friday. First pitch of the doubleheader is set for 10 a.m. MT / 11 a.m. CT. The games will not count towards the GPAC standings. The run at the Tucson Invite will conclude with two more contests on Saturday.
Mar. 8, 2019
TUCSON, Ariz. – Let’s call it a GPAC, non-GPAC doubleheader. Concordia and familiar foe Mount Marty got together on Friday (March 8) as part of the Tucson Invitational. The Bulldogs experienced both ends of the spectrum in the twin bill. They took the first game, 7-0, before suffering a 19-5 defeat in game two.
The win in Friday’s opener put an end to what had been a four-game skid. Concordia now sits at 5-9 overall heading into the final day of the road trip in Arizona.
“In that first game we played really well,” Dupic said. “(Jake) Fosgett pitched well and tt was probably the best game we’ve played this year. That second game we got out to a good start and got the lead right away. Mount Marty had a couple huge innings and we made some mistakes. It was one of those games that got away from us.”
The Bulldogs came up with a combined seven runs in the first inning of the doubleheader. They staked Fosgett to a 6-0 lead by scoring three times in the first and three times again in the second in game one. Wade Council, Christian Meza and Jesse Garcia each pounded out two hits with Meza and Garcia both collecting a pair of doubles. In consecutive at bats in the first, Council tripled, Garcia doubled, Meza doubled and Evan Bohman singled. Then in the second, Council singled in a run and Meza doubled in two.
It was plenty enough support for Fosgett, who turned in the best start of his career. The junior from the San Diego area fired all seven innings and allowed just two hits and one walk. He struck out seven. Only rarely did Fosgett put himself in trick situations. He worked around a leadoff triple in the third and a walk and a hit batter in the seventh.
Game two looked like it might go a similar route after Concordia tallied four runs in the first inning. However, the Lancers put up two runs in the third, five in the fourth, four in the fifth and eight in the seventh to make it a blowout. Five Mount Marty hitters collected three or more hits as part of a 21-hit team attack.
Meanwhile, the Bulldog offense went cold after the first inning. Garcia, Meza, Luciano DePamphilis and Beau Dorman notched one hit apiece. On the flip side, three Concordia pitchers were tagged for a combined 18 earned runs.
The Bulldogs will return to the diamond at Kino Sports Complex in Tucson on Saturday to take on two NCAA Division II foes: Minot State University (N.D.) at 9 a.m. MT / 10 a.m. CT and Southwest Minnesota State University at 12:30 p.m. MT / 1:30 p.m. CT.
Mar. 9, 2019
TUCSON, Ariz. – The Concordia University baseball team is finding out a lot about itself through a challenging nonconference schedule to begin the 2019 season. The Bulldogs squared off against two more NCAA Division II opponents at the Tucson Invitational on Saturday (March 8) and came away with a win and a loss. Concordia played long ball while defeating Southwest Minnesota State University, 10-8, before enduring a 16-3 defeat at the hands of Minot State University (N.D.).
Fifth-year head coach Ryan Dupic’s squad wound up going 5-7 on the road trip in Tucson. It now stands at 6-10 overall. The slate to this point has included five games against NCAA Division II competition and three on the home field of then eighth-ranked Oklahoma City University.
“We played a lot a people and we played really good competition,” Dupic said. “It’s probably the best competition we’ve played since we’ve been down here. I think we’re starting to get to a better understanding about what our team looks like and who fits into various roles. I’m hoping that we can now put together a lineup, a pitching staff and defense that can be consistent. We’ve played well at times. We have to be more consistent to get on a streak as we get into conference play.”
It appears the Bulldogs have the makings of a formidable lineup. In Saturday’s victory, Keaton Candor, Jesse Garcia, Evan Bohman and Beau Dorman each went deep in a contest Concordia led 9-2 after three innings. Candor drove in four runs against Beaver pitching. In that same game, Luciano DePamphilis and Dorman notched two hits apiece. Garcia, Bohman and Candor all homered in a six-run third inning.
The Bulldogs were able to hold onto the lead while using four different pitchers in the nine-inning outing. Treyton Nixon started, went three innings and then gave way to Lukas Diehm for two innings, then Dylan DuRee for 2.1 and Wade Council for 1.2. A two-way player as a freshman and sophomore, Council had not appeared on the mound yet this season. He induced a double play grounder to lock up the victory and a save.
In the second game, Jared Schipper came on in relief to throw five innings. He struck out seven. In addition, Garcia reached base three times and Bohman and Teyt Johnson notched two hits apiece. Minot State moved to 3-6.
Official game times for the start of conference play next weekend have not been finalized, but the scheduled doubleheaders with Midland will not be played in Nebraska. The GPAC will send its baseball teams down to Topeka, Kan., for neutral site games in order to avoid postponements due to snow on the ground throughout the GPAC footprint. Details on those games will be announced when available.
Mar. 17, 2019
Updated Sunday (March 17) at 12:00 p.m.
SEWARD, Neb. – The four-game series scheduled to be played Saturday and Sunday between the Concordia University baseball team and Midland has been postponed. Midland has been unable to leave Fremont due to road closures caused by flooding. The games will be made up at later dates, which are to be determined.
In order to avoid postponements, the first weekend of the GPAC baseball schedule has been adjusted. Nine conference teams will relocate to Bettis Sports Complex in Topeka, Kan. The Concordia University baseball team will play a four-game set with Midland in Kansas. The series will begin with a doubleheader at 12 p.m. CT on Saturday and then continue with a twin bill at 3 p.m. on Sunday.
Fifth-year head coach Ryan Dupic’s squad will have had a week off from game action by the time the first pitch is thrown on Saturday. The Bulldogs went 5-7 during a 12-game stay at the Tucson Invitational (March 2-9) and now stand at 6-10 overall. The nonconference slate has been challenging. It has featured five games against NCAA Division II opponents and three against the NAIA’s current No. 7-rated team: Oklahoma City University.
Concordia will strive for greater consistency in conference play. The Bulldogs own a win over Oklahoma City and over NCAA Division II Southwest Minnesota State University. On the flip side, They have dropped games by scores of 19-5 to Mount Marty and 16-3 to Minot State University (N.D.). Through 16 games, Concordia has been outscored, 110-96.
In terms of returners, outfielder Wade Council and second baseman Christian Meza are the backbone of the lineup. Third baseman Thomas Sautel has been out with a hand injury. So far this season, Meza is hitting .320 with four doubles, a home run and 13 RBIs. The native of San Diego keeps moving up the program’s all-time lists. He currently ranks in a tie for third in doubles (41), third in RBIs (114) and tied for sixth in hits (172). Meza’s 68 hits last season put him No. 3 on the school’s single season list. The current program record for career hits is held by Zak Goodrich (2009-12), who collected 234 hits while batting .364 in his career.
As a group, Concordia has shown an ability to hit the long ball. Evan Bohman and Keaton Candor have launched four home runs apiece to top the team. The team home run total has been pushed to 14. Beau Dorman (.419) and Luciano DePamphilis (.394) have been hot in the early going. DePamphilis’ 13 RBIs are tied with Meza for a team high. Bohman paced the squad with a .627 slugging percentage.
Midland, guided by head coach Chad Miller, entered this season having qualified for the national tournament three-straight years. The Warriors are 7-9 after completing a four-game series with Concordia University, Ann Arbor (March 10-11). Midland’s leading hitter is Jack Barrios, who is batting .386 with a home run and 12 RBIs. The Warriors have lacked punch so far (.372 slugging), but have gotten solid work from pitchers James Scurto (2.12 ERA), Daylon Owens (2.84) and Luke Egging (3.60).
With the venue change for the games versus Midland, Concordia is now scheduled to have its home opening doubleheader on March 30. A doubleheader originally scheduled to be played at Kansas Wesleyan University on Tuesday (March 19) has been canceled due to field unplayable field conditions. A makeup date has not been announced.
Mar. 21, 2019
In order to avoid potential inclement weather, Concordia and Mount Marty have agreed to play their doubleheader on Friday (March 22) instead of Saturday. First pitch on Friday is now slated for 3:30 p.m. CT from Bob Tereshinski Stadium in Yankton, S.D. The field is located at the intersection of Pearl and Levee Streets. The Bulldogs are also scheduled to play at Dakota Wesleyan in a 1 p.m. twin bill on Sunday.
Mar. 22, 2019
YANKTON, S.D. – Postponements last weekend meant the Concordia University baseball team was forced to wait to open up the conference portion of the 2019 schedule. The well-rested Bulldogs got stellar pitching performances from lefties Jason Munsch and Sasha Jabusch in a Friday (March 22) doubleheader sweep of Mount Marty in Yankton, S.D. Concordia won by scores of 4-2 and 9-1.
Fifth-year head coach Ryan Dupic’s squad had last seen game action back on March 9 at the Tucson Invitational. The Bulldogs are now 8-10 overall.
“Not being on the field for a long time is an easy thing to use as a potential excuse, but our guys were excited to play,” Dupic said. “I thought we were in a good place mentally. Obviously it helps when you get two good starts. Our guys really stayed in it. We had a couple plays we didn’t make and we responded really well and were able to get through those innings instead of them blowing up on us. When things didn’t go our way we hung with it – just a good mentality throughout the day.”
Munsch and Jabusch both worked at least seven innings while mastering the Lancer opposition. In the opener, Munsch faced his biggest challenges in the third and seventh innings. In that final frame, Munsch surrendered a two-run homer and then allowed two hitters to reach base with only one out. He proceeded to strike out the last two batters to polish off a complete game. Munsch finished with nine strikeouts while allowing five hits and three walks.
Jabusch was just as good in game two. He went 7.2 innings, struck out eight and scattered six hits and two walks. Once Jabusch reached the end of his leash in the eighth, Dylan DuRee came out of the bullpen and got the last four outs – all on strikeouts.
Bulldog hitters struck for a combined 19 hits on the day. Evan Bohman and Wade Council both homered in game one. Catcher Ben Berg also went 2-for-3 with an RBI and Christian Meza added two hits in the opener. In the capper, Bohman concluded a nice day by going 3-for-4 with a run and an RBI. Out of the leadoff spot, Council collected a pair of doubles and drove in one run.
Concordia never once trailed in the doubleheader. It led 4-0 in game one and pulled away in game two by scoring four runs in the fourth and four in the ninth.
Mount Marty (10-11, 2-4 GPAC) was held to a combined 12 hits on Friday. Gabriel Leon enjoyed a 3-for-6 day at the plate for the Lancers, who had split a four-game series with Dakota Wesleyan in their opening weekend of GPAC play.
The Bulldogs are hoping to return to action on Sunday with a doubleheader against Dakota Wesleyan (9-11, 4-2 GPAC). First pitch was originally slated for 1 p.m. CT from Caldwell Park in Mitchell, S.D. The two sides are currently working on a neutral location to stage the two games. For the fastest updates on schedule changes, be sure to follow @cunebulldogs on Twitter.
Mar. 23, 2019
Due to the field conditions still being unplayable at Cadwell Park in Mitchell, S.D., the location for Sunday (March 24)'s baseball doubleheader with Dakota Wesleyan has been moved to Aspen Park in Brandon, S.D. First pitch is now set for 2 p.m. CT. Head coach Ryan Dupic's squad got out of the gates in conference play with a doubleheader sweep at Mount Marty on Friday. Meanwhile, Dakota Wesleyan (9-11, 4-2 GPAC) has won four GPAC games in a row with those victories coming over Mount Marty and Dordt.
Location for Sunday's doubleheader:
917 Aspen Park Drive
Brandon, SD 57005
Mar. 24, 2019
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.
Mar. 26, 2019
SEWARD, Neb. – Impressive performances in a doubleheader sweep of Dakota Wesleyan on Sunday resulted in conference weekly awards for Jake Fosgett and Jesse Garcia. The league named Fosgett the GPAC/Hauff Mid-America Sports Pitcher of the Week and Garcia the GPAC/Hauff Mid-America Sports Player of the Week, as announced on Tuesday (March 26). Fosgett and Garcia are the first Concordia weekly award winners of the 2019 season.
Now a starting pitcher after serving as the team’s closer last season, Fosgett has found a groove. In the victory over Dakota Wesleyan, Fosgett tossed a seven-inning complete game in which he allowed one earned run on four hits and a walk while recording a career high 11 strikeouts. The junior from Carlsbad, Calif., was one hitter away from notching a second shutout in a row. Over two starts against GPAC opponents, Fosgett has allowed only one run in 14 innings, during which he has struck out 18 batters.
The strikeout rate has been impressive for Fosgett, who has fanned 35 hitters over 24 innings (four starts) for an average of 13.1 per nine innings in 2019. His first 26 career collegiate appearances came out of the bullpen (four saves in 2018). In 68.1 career innings, Fosgett owns a 4.35 ERA and has struck out 90 hitters in 68.1 innings.
Concordia was excited to add Garcia and his power bat to the lineup this season. The freshman from El Cajon, Calif., equaled a school single game record by belting three homers in the 17-5 win over Dakota Wesleyan to cap the weekend. In that same contest, Garcia scored four runs and drove in seven. For the week, he went 5-for-15 with a pair of walks. On the season, he is hitting .315 with five home runs and 17 RBIs to go along with a .449 on-base percentage and .667 slugging percentage. Garcia is one home run off the GPAC lead.
The Bulldogs (10-10, 4-0 GPAC) are scheduled to play four games between Saturday and Sunday within the GPAC. They are slated to host Briar Cliff (15-11, 6-2 GPAC) at 1 p.m. CT on Saturday.
Mar. 26, 2019
SEWARD, Neb. – The depth of the Concordia University baseball team’s pitching staff will be put to the test this week. With the addition of a makeup doubleheader, the Bulldogs are now scheduled to be in action Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday. The opponents will be Midland, Briar Cliff and Hastings with all three twin bills expected to be played outside of Seward as Plum Creek Park continues to dry up from recent wet weather.
Wednesday, March 27 vs. Midland (7-12, 2-2), 12 p.m.
Lewis and Clark Park | Sioux City, Iowa
*No live coverage due to the neutral site location
Sunday, March 31 at Hastings (5-14, 2-6), 12 p.m.
Duncan Field | Hastings, Neb.
This week will prove a lot in regards to whether fifth-year head coach Ryan Dupic’s squad will be a player in the race for a GPAC regular season title. While the Bulldogs (10-10, 4-0 GPAC) are behind most everyone else in terms of conference games played, they jumped out to a great start last week with doubleheader sweeps of Mount Marty and Dakota Wesleyan. Concordia is now 4-0 in league play for the first time since the 2010 season. This edition is also well ahead of the pace set by the 2017 conference championship team that dropped its first three GPAC games that spring.
A challenging nonconference schedule appears to be paying off now. Things have come together of late with the Bulldogs combining stellar starting pitching along with a powerful lineup. Concordia swept the just announced GPAC weekly awards with junior Jake Fosgett being named the Pitcher of the Week and Jesse Garcia the Player of the Week. Garcia made big waves with a three homer game (equaled a school record) to cap the weekend. In his start against Dakota Wesleyan, Fosgett notched a career high 11 strikeouts and allowed just one run on four hits and a walk. Jason Munsch (7 IP, 5 H, 2 ER, 3 BB, 9 K) and Sasha Jabusch (7.2 IP, 6 H, ER, 2 BB, 8 K) were also tremendous in their outings last week.
Of course the Bulldogs got a big statistical boost across the board with their offensive outburst this past Sunday. Three Concordia hitters are clustered right near the top of the GPAC home run leaderboard in Keaton Candor (six), Evan Bohman (five) and Garcia (five). As a team, the Bulldogs lead the conference in home runs per game (1.2) and slugging percentage (.497). They rank No. 2 in the conference in runs per game (6.5). Senior second baseman Christian Meza keeps climbing the program’s all-time lists, currently ranking tied for first in doubles (44), third in RBIs (118), sixth in hits (180) and 11th in runs scored (97).
Concordia was originally scheduled to play Midland in a four-game series the weekend of March 16-17. It had to be postponed due to the Warriors’ inability to leave Fremont. Head coach Chad Miller’s program was effected significantly by flooding, which caused a mess at Midland’s home field. The Warriors split a four-game series last week with defending GPAC champion Northwestern. Run prevention has been issue so far with Midland having allowed 132 runs through its first 145 innings of work. Matt Abdelnour has been the team’s biggest source of power thus far. He has collected five doubles and three home runs.
The Chargers should provide a good test on Saturday. Briar Cliff was ranked second in the most recent official GPAC poll. Head coach Boyd Pitkin’s squad enjoyed a successful weekend during which it took three of four games from Morningside. The Chargers own a run differential of +13 (158-145) through 26 games. Out of the middle of the lineup, outfielder Sawyer Olson has already knocked in 27 runs. The team’s top starting pitcher has been Jacob Wesselmann (5-0, 3.06 ERA, 35.1 IP), who has not yet been tagged with a loss.
Hastings has played two four-game series within the conference and has been dropped three of four to both Doane and Jamestown, two squads expected to be near the top of the GPAC standings. The biggest issue for the Broncos to this point has been an inability to generate offense. They are hitting .237 and averaging fewer than four runs per game. The standout at the plate has been Camden Brichacek, who is hitting .339 with seven extra base hits and a .431 on-base percentage.
The home debut for Concordia just may occur on Wednesday, April 3 when Kansas Wesleyan University is scheduled to be at Plum Creek Park.
Mar. 27, 2019
SIOUX CITY, Iowa – Despite picking up a makeup doubleheader on short notice, the Concordia University baseball team kept its early unbeaten run inside conference play alive. The Bulldogs held onto their top four starting pitchers for the weekend while calling upon some bullpen arms in victories by scores of 8-3 and 5-2 over Midland on Wednesday afternoon (March 27). The doubleheader was played at Lewis and Clark Park in Sioux City, Iowa, with both squads still unable to take to their home fields.
Four games in a row have come at neutral sites for fifth-year head coach Ryan Dupic’s squad. The six-game win streak puts his club at 12-10 overall and at 6-0 in conference play. This is the program’s first 6-0 start within the GPAC since the 2005 season.
“I was proud of our pitchers. We pitched the ball pretty well,” Dupic said. “We threw some guys who hadn’t typically pitched in the roles they were in today, but I thought they did a good job. They threw strikes for the most part and gave us a chance to win. We were pretty good offensively in game one. That first game wasn’t our best game with the mistakes we made defensively. The second one was a little more fun. They threw their ace who really battled well. We were able to scratch a few across and hang on.”
Just named the GPAC Player of the Week on Tuesday after a three-homer game over the weekend, freshman Jesse Garcia went deep again as part of win in game one. On the mound, junior Lukas Diehm got the start (first career) and gave up just a single hit and no earned runs over four innings of work. He also struck out three hitters.
Then in game two, sophomore Ryan Samuelson proved to be a saving grace out of the bullpen. He tossed 3.2 scoreless innings with only one hit allowed to go along with two strikeouts. The offensive support was supplied by four Bulldogs who each notched two hits: Evan Bohman, Wade Council, Christian Meza and Logan Ryan.
After an up-and-down run through a tough slate at the Tucson Invitational, Concordia has found a groove. These are the types of streak in conference play that the 2017 GPAC championship team put together.
“We certainly hoped so at the time,” said Dupic of how the tough early schedule may have better prepared his team for conference action. “I think we felt like we were playing some really good competition and hoped it would come to fruition here and so far it has. Hopefully that can continue. There’s a long ways to go.”
The Warriors have dropped to 7-14 overall (2-4 GPAC). Midland was coming off a four-game series split with defending GPAC champion Northwestern.
As of now, the Bulldogs are scheduled to be at home on Saturday to host Briar Cliff (16-11, 6-2 GPAC) for a 1 p.m. CT doubleheader. Concordia still has yet to get out for a practice or game on its home field of Plum Creek Park, which has been slow to respond from a wet end to the winter. Should the venue change, the announcement will appear on the web and via social media.
Mar. 31, 2019
HASTINGS, Neb. – The 2019 Concordia University baseball team has broken new ground for the program. Never before had a Bulldog baseball squad jetted out to an 8-0 record within GPAC play. Behind two shutout pitching performances, Concordia made another statement on Sunday afternoon (March 31), sweeping a doubleheader at Hastings with wins by scores of 11-0 and 10-0.
In most cases, fifth-year head coach Ryan Dupic’s squad hasn’t just squeaked by in conference play, it has dominated. The Bulldogs are now 8-0 in league action (14-10 overall) with seven of those victories coming by margins of three runs or more.
“It’s been really fun,” Dupic said. “I’m just pleased with how the guys have really stayed focused so far. There’s a nice demeanor about the team right now. When you play baseball well there’s kind of that mix of needing to be focused but also being loose and having fun. Our guys have found a nice balance with that right now. We have a bunch of guys who are very accepting of their roles and are playing good baseball.”
In both ends of the twin bill, the Bulldogs got on top within the first three innings and then kept tacking on runs while coming up with the key hits with runners in scoring position and taking advantage of Bronco miscues. The offensive support was much more than either lefty starting pitcher Jason Munsch or Sasha Jabusch needed. Munsch issued his only two walks in the first inning and then went on to completely stifle Hastings in a seven-inning complete game, three-hit shutout. Munsch baffled the Broncos to the tune of a career high 13 strikeouts.
Jabusch was similarly good in game two. He covered six innings, allowed three hits and two walks and fanned 10. Like Munsch, Jabusch worked around trouble in the first inning when he allowed a walk and a single. He managed to strand runners on second and third to keep the pitching staff’s scoreless innings streak intact. Out of the bullpen, Thomas Otte and Treyton Nixon combined to get the final three outs. Concordia pitchers totaled 25 strikeouts for the day.
“They were both pretty dominant today,” Dupic said of Munsch and Jabusch. “They threw the ball well. Jason pitched off of his fastball and was able to get some secondary pitches working. Sasha’s stuff was really crisp today. You could tell out of the gates that both of them had pretty good stuff. They got themselves out of jams early and pitched very well. We made some great plays behind them too.”
The Bulldog offense also put together some fine performances. Concordia had a trail of baserunners in game one when it collected nine hits (each from different players) and 10 walks. In that contest, Wade Council and Jesse Garcia both knocked in two runs. The big outbursts were frames of five runs in the fourth and four runs in the seventh.
In game two, Concordia racked up another nine hits, drew five walks and capitalized on four Hastings errors. Big swings were delivered by Council and Luciano DePamphilis, who both recorded a three-run double. Shortstop Logan Ryan reached base all four times thanks to a pair of singles and two hit-by-pitches. He also scored three runs. Standout second baseman Christian Meza provided some cushion in the fourth inning when he doubled home two runs. That double made Meza the program’s career leader with 45 two-baggers.
Hastings has slipped to 5-17 overall (2-8 GPAC). The Broncos continue to search for answers offensively. They have been limited to 77 runs scored in their 22 games this season.
Up next is a makeup doubleheader with Briar Cliff (18-11, 8-2 GPAC) on Tuesday. First pitch from Bishop Mueller Field in Sioux City, Iowa, is set for 1 p.m. CT. In the most recent GPAC poll (March 18), the Chargers were rated No. 2. Briar Cliff took two games from Doane in a Sunday doubleheader in Crete.
Apr. 1, 2019
SEWARD, Neb. – If weather allows, the Concordia University baseball team will play a total of eight games over a six-day stretch this week. That begins with a showdown at Briar Cliff on Tuesday in a battle between the current first and second place squads in the GPAC. Fifth-year head coach Ryan Dupic’s group hopes to play at home for the first time in 2019 on Wednesday when it is scheduled to take on Kansas Wesleyan University. The weekend will bring a four-game series with Doane.
Saturday, April 6 at Doane (10-16, 6-4) – DH
1 p.m. | Ledon Baseball Complex | Crete, Neb.
It’s still early, but at 8-0 in the conference, the Bulldogs have hopes of contending for a GPAC regular season title. Concordia captured the conference crown in 2017. The 2019 edition is ahead of the pace of that ’17 squad that sat at 5-3 (0-3 start) after eight GPAC games. No Bulldog team during the GPAC era had ever started out 8-0 in conference play. Most GPAC teams have played 10 league games (with the exception of Concordia, Midland and Northwestern). Every squad has at least four GPAC losses other than Briar Cliff (8-2).
Contributions have come from many Bulldogs in recent action. The pitching staff has been lights out of late. It did not surrender a single earned run last week over 28 innings. The duo of Jason Munsch and Sasha Jabusch completely stifled the Hastings bats. Munsch recorded a career high 13 strikeouts in a three-hit shutout while Jabusch fanned 10 hitters in six scoreless frames. The work done last week lowered the team ERA from 5.82 to 4.89 (third best in the GPAC). In terms of ERA, Jabusch (2.20) and Munsch (2.28) have been the team’s most effective starters.
So far, Concordia has had the GPAC’s most productive offense, leading the conference with an average of 6.83 runs scored per game. Seven Bulldog regulars are hitting better than .300: Christian Meza (.367), Luciano DePamphilis (.364), Jesse Garcia (.343), Beau Dorman (.326), Logan Ryan (.326), Evan Bohman (.322) and Wade Council (.310). Meza will go down as one of the program’s all-time greats. Last week he put himself alone atop the school’s all-time doubles list with 45. The San Diego native also has a realistic shot at becoming the program’s all-time hits leader before he’s done. In addition, Ryan was an on-base machine last week, during which he went 5-for-9 with eight runs scored, five walks/hit-by-pitches and a double.
As a comparison, Concordia is ranked 53rd nationally by Massey Ratings while this week’s opponents are: Briar Cliff (54th), Doane (109th) and Kansas Wesleyan (119th). The Chargers are solid in a number of areas, currently sporting GPAC rankings of third in runs per game (6.10) and fifth in ERA (5.97). Top starting pitcher Jacob Wesselmann is 5-0 with a 3.06 ERA over 35.1 innings. Doane is fully capable of putting runs on the board behind Eduardo Yanez, who has belted seven doubles and seven home runs. The Tigers have struggled to keep nonconference foes from scoring, but they have improved inside the GPAC with 44 runs allowed in 10 games.
The Bulldogs are also scheduled to play at home on three separate days next week: April 10, 12 and 13 with four weekend games against GPAC foes on the docket.
Apr. 2, 2019
SIOUX CITY, Iowa – The Concordia University baseball program has never before enjoyed this type of run to begin a conference season. Even on a day when their bats were limited to a combined eight hits, the Bulldogs managed another doubleheader sweep of a GPAC foe. The Bulldogs rode their stunningly dominant pitching staff to road wins over Briar Cliff by scores of 1-0 and 3-0 in Sioux City, Iowa, on Tuesday afternoon (April 2).
Fifth-year head coach Ryan Dupic’s squad has rolled to a 10-0 conference record (16-10 overall) as Concordia continues to add to the program’s longest ever unbeaten streak to open up GPAC action. All other GPAC squads now have at least four conference losses.
“It’s hard (to explain), maybe just baseball,” Dupic said of the team’s 10-game win streak. “When you go on a good streak in baseball you pitch well on the right day and you hit well on the right day. Baseball is just a funny game. It’s been a really good team effort. We’re just going to stay focused and keep being ourselves. It’s not how you start, it’s how you finish. We’ll stay with it and take it a day at a time.”
The Bulldogs entered the day leading the GPAC in runs per game, but it has been the pitching staff that has stolen the show lately. Junior Jake Fosgett has made himself cozy in the starting rotation. In his third masterpiece in a row, Fosgett allowed only two hits and three walks and struck out 11 hitters in seven-inning shutout. The native of Carlsbad, Calif., danced around the most trouble after back-to-back walks to begin the third inning. Two lineouts were recorded with runners on second and third.
In the second game, starter Tanner Wauhob continually succeeded when he found himself in jams. He worked six shutout innings that saw him allow three hits and four walks to go along with six strikeouts. Wauhob walked the first hitter in the seventh and then was relieved by Dylan DuRee, who got the final three outs to earn the save.
Incredibly, the pitching staff has now fired four shutouts in a row, spanning 28 scoreless innings. Concordia has gone 42 consecutive innings without surrendering an earned run. Fosgett has been as good as any Bulldog pitcher. He has given up a grand total of one run over his last three starts.
“I’m just really proud of them,” Dupic said. “Briar Cliff is the type of team that puts scrappy at bats together. Jake Fosgett was the best he’s ever been. He was just incredible today. He had all of his pitches working. He was really focused and in his own world in the way he executed. Then Tanner Wauhob was himself. He gets into some jams at times, but he finds a way out of them and makes the big pitch at the big time.”
All Concordia runs came in the third inning on Tuesday. In the third frame in game one, Ben Berg got things going with a double. Pinch runner Peyton Scott scored two batters later on a double by Wade Council. Then in game two, Christian Meza delivered a two-run double and Evan Bohman chipped in with an RBI single. Council was the lone Bulldog with a hit in both ends of the twin bill.
Briar Cliff (18-13, 8-4 GPAC) has been on a nice run of its own having won eight of 10 to begin its GPAC schedule. The Chargers got a fine pitching performance from Jacob Wesselmann, who allowed just a run on two hits over six innings in game one of the makeup doubleheader. The Chargers were the visitor on the scoreboard in what were originally scheduled to be home games for Concordia.
The Bulldogs are slated to step outside of league action on Wednesday and welcome Kansas Wesleyan University (15-15) for a 5 p.m. CT doubleheader at Plum Creek Park in Seward.
Apr. 3, 2019
The Concordia University and Kansas Wesleyan University baseball programs have agreed to call of their scheduled doubleheader for Wednesday (April 3). No makeup date has been set. The two sides were also slated to play in Salina, Kan., earlier this season.
Head coach Ryan Dupic's squad will now turn its attention to this weekend's four-game series with Doane. The action will begin in Crete on Saturday with a 1 p.m. doubleheader. Play will shift to Plum Creek Park on Sunday for another 1 p.m. twin bill. The Bulldogs will carry a spotless 10-0 conference record into the weekend.
Apr. 5, 2019
By his own admission, Jake Fosgett was little more than an average high school pitcher. His ultra-slender build and, in his own words, “not very good” junior and senior prep seasons did little to catch the eye of college recruiters. Fortunately for the native of Carlsbad, Calif., a certain coach from a school in Nebraska happened to notice him.
Baseball scouting is an inexact science, but Concordia University head baseball coach Ryan Dupic saw something in the then 6-foot-2 right-hander during a showcase in California. The way Fosgett spun that breaking ball made Dupic’s eyes light up.
“He was about 135 pounds and he came out to pitch (during the showcase),” Dupic said. “A group of us coaches were taking turns evaluating pitchers. I just saw the way the ball came out of his hand. He threw a really crisp breaking ball. It was some other coach’s turn to evaluate and I could tell he wasn’t paying attention so I budged in to evaluate so I could talk to Jake afterwards. I just felt like this guy’s got a chance to be really good.”
Fosgett turned out to be at the right place at the right time. Asked if anyone else showed interest in him for college baseball, Fosgett quickly replies with a simple, “No.” Not a single one – other than Concordia. Dupic has a keen eye for pitching and for projecting arms like his into the future. That curveball was too good to ignore.
That curve also made it too difficult to leave Fosgett in the bullpen, where he resided as both a freshman and sophomore for the Bulldogs. The 15 innings he threw in 2018 were not enough to maximize the value that Fosgett brings to the table. Now 31 appearances into his college career, Fosgett has honed swing-and-miss stuff that has resulted in 101 strikeouts in 75.1 innings at Concordia. Over his last three starts (three complete games), he has allowed a grand total of one run.
“It’s been mostly about mentality,” Fosgett says of his success. “I learned a lot from my first start in Oklahoma (versus MidAmerica Nazarene). The wind was blowing out pretty hard and I was getting frustrated with that. I learned from that pretty quickly. One of the things I’ve been telling myself is to control the controllables. You have to focus on what you can do in an outing. I applied that in Tucson and that went well so I’ve used that same mentality since then.”
In Fosgett’s transition from ace reliever to starter, he gave up six earned runs in his first start and then five earned runs in his second. Those results were perhaps an indication that it would take time to adjust, but some of the underlying numbers were encouraging. He fanned 17 hitters over those two games. Since then, he’s been lights out.
Fosgett will still have to earn the role of staff ace in a friendly competition within a rotation that also includes Sasha Jabusch, Jason Munsch and Tanner Wauhob. Together they have helped Concordia record four shutouts in a row. Clearly the move is working for Fosgett.
“We had him as our closer and we felt really good every time we brought him in,” Dupic said. “He did a really good job but when we looked at the volume of innings, we felt like we weren’t maximizing a guy who we knew was pretty good. He wanted to be a starter so we wanted to make sure he would be effective in that role. He had a great summer and was very focused. He came back in the fall and he was fantastic.”
With the help of Dupic, Fosgett is pitching better than he ever has before. His fastball can touch 90 miles per hour, his curveball is a wipeout pitch and he will sometimes mix in a slider. That arsenal has helped him step into the vacancies created by the departures of last year’s Nos. 1 and 2 starters.
“Relieving the past two years I had to be ready on a daily basis,” Fosgett said. “Last year I was up getting hot in the bullpen most games. This year it’s been more about building up, feeling good for your start and then recovering for the next one. The biggest change was in the offseason. We built up volume in bullpens and live at bats to prepare my arm to throw a lot more pitches.”
To demonstrate his commitment to the new role, Fosgett even cut short a family vacation so he could stay with his summer regimen. These are the sorts of things that come together for teams that win when the real games come around. Fosgett has been nearly spotless against conference competition while helping the Bulldogs to a 10-0 record in league play.
Fosgett was part of the 2017 GPAC championship squad at Concordia, so he knows something about what it takes to win a title. There is certainly a long way to go, but the stacking of wins now is going to make a difference later when a champion is crowned. Fosgett and the Bulldogs are playing like a team with something to prove after last season’s sixth-place finish in the GPAC.
“I think one of the biggest differences is just trusting yourself,” Fosgett said. “We have a lot of returners who have been on the varsity for a long time. They’ve been leading the way from a mentality standpoint and have just been confident each outing. Coach has been preaching for us to be even-keeled. I approach it like we’re a 0-0 team just trying to get some wins.”
Concordia now owns the No. 1 ERA in the GPAC while riding a streak of 42 consecutive innings without surrendering an earned run. Fosgett explains it in part by saying, “Coach Dupic knows his stuff really well.” A mutual respect makes trust come easy. Perhaps it also makes it easier to poke fun at each other.
Dupic’s first impression of Fosgett in simplistic terms was that this was a skinny kid from California with a good curveball. Now Fosgett has added good weight (and facial hair), refined his pitching skills and has become a mature leader who sets a fine example for his teammates. It all started with that meeting at a showcase in California. Dupic essentially gave a verbal offer on the spot.
Says Fosgett, “The funny story with Coach is when I ask him, ‘What did you see in me?’ He told me, ‘I saw a good curveball.’ Jokingly I’ll tell him, ‘All I am is a curveball to you.’”
Apr. 6, 2019
CRETE, Neb. – Who knows how long the unbeaten ride within conference play will last, but this Concordia University baseball team is soaking it up right now. In both ends of the doubleheader in Crete on Saturday (April 6), the Bulldogs jumped out to early leads and then held off Doane in the late innings. Concordia won by scores of 4-3 and 5-4. A three-run inning in both contests propelled the Bulldogs to their latest triumphs.
Prior to this season, the longest unbeaten run to begin conference play for the Bulldogs was 6-0. Fifth-year head coach Ryan Dupic’s squad has rolled out to an impressive 12-0 GPAC record (18-10 overall). All other GPAC teams have at least four conference losses.
“I don’t think we walked out of today feeling like we played our very best, especially from a defensive perspective,” Dupic said. “We hurt ourselves a little bit at the end of game one and the beginning of game two, but there is something to be said for finding a way to win games. I really commend our guys on that. We did a nice job of getting leads early. Playing with a lead does a lot for you. When you make mistakes you can still keep your composure.”
Senior second baseman Christian Meza has put together some of the best games of his career against Doane and he burned the nearby rival again on Saturday. His three-run homer in the third inning of game one proved to be the big blow. Meza also added an RBI single in the fourth inning of game two. With the help of Meza, Concordia led 4-0 in game one and then 3-0 in game two.
The Tigers (11-19, 7-7 GPAC) made a comeback effort in both ends of the doubleheader. Senior Dylan DuRee got the save in both games, which got tense in the final innings. In the opener, Trent Jeary singled in a pair of unearned runs in the bottom of the seventh. With the potential winning run at the plate, DuRee struck out Aaron Mason to end the game. Again with the potential walk-off run in the box in game two, DuRee coaxed another strikeout to complete the sweep.
“He was terrific,” Dupic said of DuRee. “In game one I was disappointed because we didn’t finish well. Dylan was making pitches but we made a couple errors to get the (seventh) inning started and made it more interesting than it needed to be. I really tip my cap to him. He stayed with it and got the job done. In game two I brought him in a little bit earlier with the intention of having him throw just an inning or two, but he looked sharp.”
DuRee wound up throwing 3.1 innings in relief for the day. Dupic again got solid starts with Jason Munsch throwing game one and Sasha Jabusch taking the ball for game two. Munsch allowed one run on seven hits (no walks) and struck out six. Jabusch covered 6.2 innings, gave up six hits, three runs (two earned) and five walks and fanned five.
At the plate, the Bulldogs notched 18 hits over the 16 innings of action. Four Concordia batsmen put up exactly two hits apiece in game two: Wade Council, Beau Dorman, Teyt Johnson and Meza. Keaton Candor and Jesse Garcia contributed an RBI double apiece.
For the most part, the Bulldogs were able to contain a powerful Doane lineup, although slugger Eduardo Yanez went 4-for-5 in game two. The Tigers totaled 16 hits for the day.
The two sides are scheduled to go head-to-head in another doubleheader at 1 p.m. CT on Sunday. If it goes as planned, Concordia will play its first home games of the season.
“I commend the guys for finding ways to win,” added Dupic. “Hopefully we can play clean tomorrow and execute.”
Apr. 7, 2019
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.
Apr. 8, 2019
SEWARD, Neb. – It’s been an incredible ride through the first half of the conference season for the Concordia University baseball team, which owns a spotless 14-0 GPAC record. The Bulldogs survived all threats last week to that sparkling mark while sweeping a doubleheader at Briar Cliff and then a four-game series from Doane. The Bulldogs finally made their first home appearance on Sunday when Doane visited Plum Creek Park.
Tuesday, April 9 at Midland (14-17, 7-7) – DH
4 p.m. | Moeller Field | Fremont, Neb.
The 14-game win streak within conference play is the longest in program history. Things have gotten serious for a squad led by head coach Ryan Dupic, who also steered Concordia to a GPAC regular season title in 2017. According to available data, the 2019 Bulldogs are just the second team in GPAC baseball history (2000-present) to start out 14-0 in conference play. The only other squad to accomplish that feat was the 2014 Doane squad that finished at a perfect 20-0 in the GPAC. Based upon the current league standings, the biggest threats to Concordia’s championship bid are Jamestown (12-4), Briar Cliff (10-6) and Morningside (9-6).
Pitching has been the major reason behind the success of the Bulldogs, who sport a 1.47 team ERA in GPAC games only. The bulk of the innings during this run during GPAC play have been covered by the team’s main four starters: Jake Fosgett, Sasha Jabusch, Jason Munsch and Tanner Wauhob. All four own 3-0 records in conference action. Fosgett has been especially filthy, using his fastball-curveball combo to strike out 40 hitters over his last four starts (28 innings, four runs allowed). In his latest outing, Wauhob fired a nine-inning complete game in the fourth victory over Doane.
The Concordia lineup was held to a combined 20 runs over last week’s six games, but the hits came at opportune times. Just when it looked like the Bulldogs may finally drop a GPAC game, the Bulldogs staged a two-run rally in the eighth inning of the finale against Doane. Jesse Garcia’s two-out RBI single proved to be the game winner. Christian Meza also belted a key three-run homer in the first game of the series. On the program all-time lists, Meza currently ranks No. 1 in doubles (46), third in hits (191), third in RBIs (129) and eighth in runs scored (106).
Concordia also hopes to complete a four-game sweep of Midland, an opponent that the Bulldogs defeated in neutral site games in Sioux City, Iowa, 8-3 and 5-2, on March 27. The Warriors have won three games in a row, including two over Hastings. Midland reached the national tournament last season via a GPAC tournament runner up claim. The Warriors offense has not been as potent as recent seasons (currently averaging 5.1 runs per game), but Matt Abdelnour (nine doubles, four home runs) can put a charge into the ball.
After dipping outside of conference play on Wednesday (versus York), the Bulldogs will see Morningside on Friday. The Mustangs have been fairly balanced in terms of their hitting (6.1 runs per game) and pitching (team 4.82 ERA). Morningside has gotten good work out of a trio of bullpen arms: Wyatt Spencer (2.25 ERA, 16 IP), Camden Parks (3.05 ERA, 20.2 IP) and Elliott Conover (3.18 ERA, 17 IP).
Jamestown entered its first season in the GPAC as the conference’s preseason favorite. The Jimmies went 45-11 in 2018 and just missed out reaching the NAIA World Series. Concordia and Jamestown met in the opening round of the 2017 national tournament with the result being an 8-7 Bulldog win. The Jimmies have been on a roll themselves having won seven GPAC games in a row. They like to force the action by stealing bases Tanner Roundy has swiped 25 of the team’s 88 stolen bases. Roundy is also one of the top pitchers for a staff with a 4.23 ERA.
Next week Concordia is scheduled to play at York next Tuesday (April 16) before a four-game weekend series at Northwestern (April 18-19).
Apr. 9, 2019
SEWARD, Neb. – One of the emerging stars of the first place Bulldogs, junior Jake Fosgett has picked up the GPAC/Hauff Mid-America Sports Pitcher of the Week award for the second time in three weeks, as announced on Tuesday (April 9). Fosgett was also named the GPAC Pitcher of the Week on March 26. Teammate Jesse Garcia was named the GPAC Player of the Week on that same date.
While adjusting from a transition to the starting rotation this season, Fosgett has made himself especially comfortable over his past four starts. In action over the last week, the right-hander from Carlsbad, Calif., tossed a pair of seven-inning complete games while allowing a combined three runs on eight hits and four walks. In those contests against Briar Cliff/Doane, Fosgett struck out 11 hitters in both outings. Fosgett has allowed a grand total of four runs over his last four starts (all complete games).
On the season, Fosgett owns a 3.55 ERA and 5-1 record (six starts) over 38 innings. He has allowed 29 hits and 10 walks and has racked up 57 strikeouts (13.5 strikeouts per nine innings). Among GPAC pitchers, Fosgett ranks second in lowest opponent batting average (.206), second in wins, third in strikeouts per nine innings and seventh in ERA.
The Bulldogs (20-10, 14-0 GPAC) will return to action today (April 9) with a doubleheader at Midland. First pitch is set for 4 p.m. CT from Fremont, Neb.
Apr. 9, 2019
FREMONT, Neb. – The Concordia University baseball team has some cockroach-like qualities to it in that it takes a lot to put it to rest. In Tuesday evening (April 9)’s makeup doubleheader in Fremont, Neb., the Bulldogs narrowly missed out on yet another conference sweep. Concordia took game one from Midland, 5-3, and then lost in walk-off fashion, 5-4, in a wild finish to game two. The GPAC unbeaten run made it all the way to 15-0.
Now fifth-year head coach Ryan Dupic’s will have be tasked with bouncing back from an unfamiliar taste of defeat. The Bulldogs (21-11, 15-1 GPAC) had not lost a game since their final game of the Tucson Invitational back on March 9.
“We put ourselves in a position to win both games again,” Dupic said. “That last inning got away from us. We lost a ball in the lights and had some mistakes, but I’m proud of our players. Obviously it’s hard to swallow a loss and piece of all of us struggles with that. At the same time, we’re right there in every game. I like where we’re at.”
Concordia’s main four starters in the rotation were on the shelf after having pitched in the four-game weekend sweep of Doane. Midland had also played doubleheaders this past Saturday and Sunday. Despite those facts, both teams were competitive on the mound. Junior Lukas Diehm got the ball for the Bulldogs in game one and covered five innings (two earned runs on five hits and a walk) on his way to a win.
Dupic’s boys were suddenly one step away from a four-game sweep of the Warriors (15-18, 8-8 GPAC). A 16th win in a row began to seem likely when Wade Council singled in a run in the top of the seventh to cut Concordia’s deficit to 2-1. The bases were loaded with no one out. Midland’s Matt Abedlnour proceeded to strike out Christian Meza and Evan Bohman before Jesse Garcia (two-run single) and Luciano DePamphilis (RBI single) emerged in the clutch. They gave the Bulldogs a 4-2 lead.
Unfortunately, the night ended with the Warriors celebrating a walk-off victory. The game ended when Austin Hamilton’s fielder's choice coupled with an error brought home the tying and winning runs. It capped a frustrating bottom of the seventh that included a pair of Concordia errors and a walk.
Closer Dylan DuRee had been called upon to nail down the save in game two. He completed game one by getting the final six outs while facing the minimum. Jared Schipper (3.1 innings, two runs allowed), Ryan Samuelson (2.2 scoreless innings) and DuRee each pitched in game two.
The Bulldog offense broke out with 12 hits in game one, including two knocks apiece from Ben Berg, Bohman, Council and Teyt Johnson. DePamphilis enjoyed a four-hit, three-RBI night. DePamphilis and Meza contributed a two-run double apiece in game one.
It has been a decidedly up-and-down campaign for Midland, which dealt with the flooding of its home field early this season. The Warriors entered this season having qualified for the national tournament three years in a row.
The Bulldogs are scheduled to come back home and host the remaining five games on this week’s schedule. That stretch begins on Wednesday with a dip outside of league action with York College (18-14) making a visit to Plum Creek Park for a 5:30 p.m. CT first pitch. It will be a single nine-inning game.
Apr. 10, 2019
SEWARD, Neb. – Not many people who watched this game will remember it. Strong winds gusting in from center field made it nearly impossible to drive the baseball during a bone chilling evening that featured a combined 13 walks and six errors. Visiting York College emerged from Plum Creek Park with an 8-2 victory over the Concordia University baseball team in a mid-week nonconference tilt on Wednesday (April 10).
Fifth-year head coach Ryan Dupic’s squad shelved most of its top pitchers and many starting position players as the first place Bulldogs (21-12, 15-1 GPAC) gear up for a significant weekend of conference action.
A combination of wildness and defensive miscues plagued Concordia on Wednesday. The Panthers (19-14) took advantage by scoring three runs in the first, one in the second, three in the fourth and one in the fifth. All the while, Dupic used six different pitchers, who essentially had the opportunity to audition for more opportunities down the road. Shane Whittaker struck out five hitters in 2.2 innings and Dresden Wilson fired two scoreless frames.
The Bulldog pitching staff did a nice job settling in for the final five innings. There just wasn’t enough offensive firepower to make a serious rally. Concordia got on the board in the bottom of the sixth when freshman Ben Berg defied the winds by drilling a liner to right for his first career home run. Berg went 2-for-4 and drew a walk. The second Bulldog run was of the unearned variety and came in the bottom of the ninth.
Regulars who watched from the dugout on Wednesday included Keaton Candor, Wade Council, Jesse Garcia, Christian Meza and Logan Ryan. Their absences from the lineup gave chances to the likes of Nicholas Boys, Carson Lindell and Seward native Keith Wolverton.
York has had a perennially strong program. The Panthers (16-7 in conference play) currently reside in fourth place in the Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference, which is led by 12th-ranked Oklahoma Wesleyan University. In Wednesday’s game, the standouts for York were Matt Nunes (4-for-4) and Travis Turner (3-for-5).
The Bulldogs are scheduled to return to conference play on Friday with a doubleheader versus Morningside (19-10, 9-6 GPAC). First pitch is slated for 4 p.m. CT from Plum Creek Park. Concordia is also set to take on Jamestown (23-11, 12-4 GPAC) in another GPAC twin bill on Saturday. Should inclement weather affect the schedule, updates will be announced via the website and @cunebulldogs on Twitter.
Apr. 11, 2019
The Concordia University baseball program has announced the postponement of Friday (April 12)'s scheduled home doubleheader with Morningside due to inclement weather. The two sides are now slated to play at Plum Creek Park at 4 p.m. CT on Monday (April 15). The twin bill versus Jamestown on Saturday remains on schedule. Head coach Ryan Dupic's squad leads the conference with a 15-1 GPAC mark.
Apr. 14, 2019
SEWARD, Neb. – Junior Jason Munsch made it his mission to keep some distance between the Concordia University baseball team and Jamestown at the top of the GPAC standings. The league’s first and second place teams battled for 21 innings on Saturday (April 13) with the result being a doubleheader split at Plum Creek Park. The Bulldogs took game one, 3-2, before falling in a 14-inning marathon, 6-5, to cap the day.
Fifth-year head coach Ryan Dupic’s squad remains in good position atop the conference. At 16-2 in the GPAC (22-13 overall), Concordia kept its three-game lead over the Jimmies. Both are examples of teams that grind until the very last out.
“It was two good ballgames,” Dupic said. “The first game was really tight obviously the whole game. They came back late and we were able to hang on. The second game we fell behind but were able to come back. It was pretty competitive baseball. I’m really proud of our guys. They fought hard. (Jared) Schipper did such a great job. Unfortunately we just came up a little bit short.”
The dominance of the Bulldog pitching staff has been a major storyline this season. Concordia entered the weekend with a 1.61 team ERA in conference play. When he is commanding his pitches, Munsch is about as good as it gets in the GPAC. The lefty from Campbell, Calif., racked up a career high 16 strikeouts in a performance that mesmerized Jamestown (24-12, 13-5 GPAC).
Munsch (4-2, 2.21 ERA) walked one hitter apiece in the first, second and third innings before settling in. The Jimmies finally got on the board with two outs in the bottom of the seventh when Zach Zurbrugg hit a two-run homer to right. Munsch calmly struck out the next batter to polish off his latest masterpiece.
“Mostly I need to use my legs,” Munsch said of his success. “That’s why my accuracy struggles at times. It just took a little bit of settling down and figuring that out. Nobody goes out there expecting to throw 16 strikeouts. Sometimes things just work and you go with it.”
Concordia got just enough offense in game one via a two-run single in the fourth inning by Teyt Johnson and an insurance RBI single by Keaton Candor in the sixth. Evan Bohman went 2-for-2 with a walk and a run in the opener.
The second game lasted roughly four-and-a-half hours and finally came to a conclusion when Ben Berg grounded out with runners at first and second in the bottom of the 14th. Jamestown won despite scoring in only two of the 14 innings. The big blow came when the Jimmies notched five runs in the third. The Bulldogs eventually tied it in the seventh on a wacky play that involved Christian Meza doubling and scoring in a sequence of errant throws made by Jamestown.
For a moment it looked like Meza’s single through the right side in the 13th would provide the walk-off tally, but Wade Council was ruled out at the plate on a throw in from right field. The Jimmies regained the lead on an unearned run in the top of the 14th.
Meza put together a 5-for-9 day that pushed his career hit total to 197 (second most in program history). Council and Meza both recorded four hits in game two.
Schipper was a life saver out of the bullpen after starter Sasha Jabusch failed to get out of the third inning. Schipper covered 6.2 innings of shutout relief. Dylan DuRee then threw the last 4.2 innings. He was charged with the loss, although his only run allowed was unearned.
On Monday (April 15), the Bulldogs will make up a doubleheader versus Morningside (19-10, 9-6 GPAC) that was originally scheduled for this past Friday. First pitch from Plum Creek Park is set for 4 p.m. CT. The Mustangs will first be in Crete on Sunday to take on Doane.
Apr. 14, 2019
SIOUX CITY, Iowa – Part I of a weekend GPAC road trip was a success for the Concordia University softball team. The Bulldogs blasted four home runs, including two by freshman Camry Moore, in a doubleheader sweep at Briar Cliff on Saturday (April 13). Concordia won by scores of 11-4 and 10-0 (five innings) while pounding Charger pitching to the tune of 22 combined hits.
Head coach Shawn Semler’s squad effectively bounced back from a pair of defeats Tuesday at Morningside. The Bulldogs (18-6, 7-3 GPAC) remain close to the top of the GPAC standings halfway through their conference schedule.
“It was a story of us really jumping out strong in that first inning,” Semler said. “And then your pitchers can just throw strikes. We had talked about Morningside and where we thought we were. I think the girls handled it well. You have to come back from it. They want to show people what they’re really made of. Their attitudes have been very positive. They want to show people that they’re very good in this conference.”
If Semler could have scripted the first inning of both games on Saturday, this was exactly what he would have wanted. Concordia put up eight runs in the first in game one and then five in the opening frame of game two. Tori Homolka collected two hits in the first inning of game one with the big blow being her grand slam. In that contest, Homolka went 3-for-4 with five RBIs. Multiple hits were also delivered in game one by Moore (3-for-4), Hhana Haro (2-for-5) and Jenessa Jarvis (2-for-5).
Moore has been a solid hitter all season, but this was the first time she really flashed a power bat as a collegiate player. She went 5-for-7 on the day with a two-run homer in the first and fourth innings of game two. They were the first two homers of Moore’s career.
“We’ve talked about how good of a hitter she is,” Semler said. “She has to go up there and hit the ball like she knows she can. It was fun to watch her break out. You could just see her almost exhale that she’s back and driving the ball well.”
Fellow freshman Kylee Nixon also connected for a two-run homer in the fifth inning of game two. Nixon went 2-for-3 with two runs and two RBIs. Meanwhile, Haro just keeps on hitting. She added two more knocks in the second game. As part of the five-run first, Haro belted a two-run double.
Semler used the same pitching arrangement as he has all season with Moore working game one and senior Brittany Woolridge taking game two. Moore covered 6.2 innings and allowed only one run on three hits. Woolridge then tossed a five-inning, two-hit shutout to move her season record to 9-1.
Briar Cliff (7-22, 2-12 GPAC) has now dropped 10 GPAC games in a row. The Chargers managed to avoid a run rule loss in game one by scoring three runs in the bottom of the fifth. Briar Cliff has a new coach this season, Erin Bly.
The location for Sunday’s doubleheader against Mount Marty (17-17, 8-6 GPAC) has been changed. It is now scheduled to be played at Sya Riverside Sports Complex in Sioux City, Iowa, with the first pitch at 1 p.m. CT.
Apr. 14, 2019
SEWARD, Neb. – It was an opportune time for a Sunday off day after the Concordia University baseball team battled Jamestown for 21 innings on Saturday in a matchup between the squads holding down the top two spots in the GPAC standings. With 10 league games remaining, each one carries plenty of weight for the first place Bulldogs, who are hoping to protect a three-game lead (as of Sunday afternoon). Head coach Ryan Dupic’s program captured a GPAC regular season title in 2017.
Tuesday, April 16 at York College (21-14) – 1x9
5:30 p.m. | Levitt Stadium | York, Neb.
Thursday, April 18 at Northwestern (15-19, 9-9) – DH
4 p.m. | on campus field | Orange City, Iowa
Friday, April 19 at Northwestern (15-19, 9-9) – DH
1 p.m. | on campus field | Orange City, Iowa
This week will be another one that tests the depth of Dupic’s pitching staff with seven games scheduled over a five-day stretch. Thankfully, Dupic has a strong pitching staff to lean upon. The latest gem was tossed by junior lefty Jason Munsch, who struck out a career high 16 hitters in a 3-2 victory over Jamestown. In conference games only, Concordia (23-12, 16-2 GPAC) owns a remarkable team ERA of 1.82. In his four starts against GPAC opponents, Munsch is 4-0 with a 1.67 ERA and 44 strikeouts in 27 innings. In conference play, Jared Schipper (1.38), Jake Fosgett (1.71), Lukas Diehm (1.80), Tanner Wauhob (2.25) and Sasha Jabusch (3.13) all own impressive ERA’s.
The strikeout rate has been particularly eye popping for Munsch and company. Among all NAIA pitchers, Munsch ranks fifth (14.24) and Fosgett ranks 11th (13.50) in terms of most strikeouts per nine innings. Out of the bullpen, ace reliever Dylan DuRee has racked up 21 strikeouts over 20 innings. The staff strikeout rate per nine innings stands at 10.35. That rate puts the Bulldogs in good position to break the school team single season strikeout record that has been reset numerous times during Dupic’s tenure. The current record stands at 382 by the 2018 squad.
At the plate, Concordia has gotten its most consistent output out of the top two players in the lineup: right fielder Wade Council and second baseman Christian Meza. Both Council and Meza cranked out four hits in the 14-inning marathon loss to Jamestown on Saturday. While doing so, Meza pushed his career hit total to 197. Meza is on the verge of joining Zak Goodrich (234 career hits from 2009-12) as the only players in program history with 200 or more career hits. On the season, Meza is batting .353 while Council is hitting .339. Both players sport on-base percentages north of .400 and slugging percentages better than .500.
Morningside was in action Sunday at Doane after having more than a week between games. The Mustangs entered the day leading the GPAC in batting average (.306) while ranking third in the league in runs scored per game (6.07). It’s not an overwhelmingly powerful team, but Morningside employs five regulars with batting averages better than .300, led by Carter Kratz (.378). The team’s most called upon starting pitcher has been Aaron Homme (4-2, 5.23 ERA in nine starts).
For the second week in a row, the Bulldogs are set to play York in a nonconference nine-inning game, this time at York. Last week’s contest turned into an opportunity for players on both sides who might not normally see action in conference games. The Panthers (21-14) took an 8-2 decision in an ugly game. York has had a well-respected program that has made regular trips to the national tournament in recent years.
Prior to the Easter holiday, Concordia and Northwestern will engage in a four-game series in Orange City, Iowa. The Red Raiders are the defending GPAC regular season and tournament champions, but have slid back to a crowded middle of the pack in the conference this season. Northwestern’s Austin Zylstra has been one of the league’s most dependable offensive players while sporting a slash line of .387/.493/.566 this season. As a team, the Red Raiders have drilled 26 homers. On the flip side, Northwestern has allowed 216 runs over 246.2 innings.
If all games are played as scheduled this week, the Bulldogs will be down to just a four-game home series (April 26-27) with Dordt left on the regular season calendar.
Apr. 15, 2019
SEWARD, Neb. – The first thing head coach Ryan Dupic could think to say to his team on Monday night (April 15) was simply, “You guys are fun.” A lot of fun was had during a fifth-inning game two rally that sparked the Concordia University baseball team to a doubleheader sweep of visiting Morningside on a perfect evening at Plum Creek Park. The Bulldogs took care of the Mustangs by scores of 9-5 and 8-4.
These are exciting times for Dupic’s squad, which has improved to 18-2 in conference play. First place Concordia now owns a four-game lead over second place Jamestown (14-6 GPAC).
“I have not processed that a whole bunch yet,” Dupic said of the team’s perch atop the standings. “That’s really good, but we’re just going to move on to tomorrow. I’m very happy. We’re going to enjoy this. You take two seconds to reflect – it’s a pretty good thing to be able to do that. We’re just going to stay focused and keep playing and look forward to the future.”
First let’s revel in the present. In the latest conference twin bill, the Bulldogs figured out how to win in two very different ways. In game one, Concordia took advantage of a series of Morningside miscues and built a 9-1 lead. In game two, the Bulldogs spotted the Mustangs (20-13, 10-9 GPAC) a 4-0 advantage before playing long ball. With a first pitch temperature of nearly 80 degrees and virtually no wind, Concordia’s power hitters finally had their opportunity to drive the baseball.
Catcher Beau Dorman first got the Bulldogs on the board with a solo shot to center leading off the bottom of the third. The fifth inning is when things really got fun. Logan Ryan kick-started a rally from a 4-2 deficit at the time with a one-out double. Three batters later, Evan Bohman knotted the score with a two-run single. That set the stage for Jesse Garcia’s rocket over the left field wall for a three-run go-ahead blast.
“I was definitely sitting fastball,” Garcia said. “He had been having trouble locating his curveball. I got ahead in the count so I was sitting fastball and I just drove it.”
Keaton Candor added a towering homer to left an inning later to provide cushion that sophomore right-handed pitcher Ryan Samuelson really didn’t even need. The Omaha native faced the minimum of 12 batters in his four innings of hitless relief of starter Tanner Wauhob. The only smear on Samuelson’s line was a one-out walk in the fifth. That runner was eventually erased on a Dorman pickoff throw.
In the opener, junior Jake Fosgett put together a solid start despite finding himself in trouble on numerous occasions. He again displayed swing-and-miss stuff while striking out eight in 5.1 innings. Fosgett allowed two runs (one earned) on five hits and two walks. Wade Council moved from right field to pitcher and recorded the final five outs.
It was another stellar day at the plate for Council, whose batting average skyrocketed to .354 by night’s end. He went 2-for-3 in both ends of the doubleheader and scored three total runs. Bohman was a key figure in game two with his RBI double in addition to the aforementioned two-run single that tied the game. Christian Meza went 2-for-4 with a run and an RBI in game one and now stands at 199 hits for his career.
Added Dupic, “I don’t know what else to say. They’re a fun group to be around. They just keep playing the game. I love the way we came out and how good we were early. We fell behind (in game two) but we just kept battling. I’m just so proud of them for their resolve and the way they stayed with things.”
Morningside game two pitcher Thomas Johnson had been going along quite well until that explosive fifth inning. Two Mustangs had a homer apiece on the day – Jordan Pierce and Nic Metcalf.
The Bulldogs will take on York (22-15) on Tuesday in a single nonconference game at 5:30 p.m. CT in York, Neb. Concordia has a four-game series upcoming this Thursday and Friday at Northwestern. With the standings as they are, Jamestown is the only team with a realistic shot of chasing down the Bulldogs for first place.
Apr. 16, 2019
SEWARD, Neb. – The GPAC weekly award releases have been a reflection of the dominance the Concordia pitching staff has displayed within conference play. On Tuesday (April 16), junior Jason Munsch was named the GPAC/Hauff Mid-America Sports Pitcher of the Week. Bulldog hurlers have been responsible for three of the past four conference pitcher of the week honors with Jake Fosgett having won two such awards.
Munsch has been one of the nation’s most difficult pitchers to make contact off of with a season rate of 14.2 strikeouts per nine innings. The lefty from Campbell, Calif., was voted the GPAC Pitcher of the Week based upon his performance last week in a seven-inning complete game victory over Jamestown. In that contest, Munsch overpowered the Jimmies with a career high 16 strikeouts. He allowed two runs on four hits and three walks. Munsch struck out two or more hitters in six of the seven frames while helping first place Concordia maintain its lead over second place Jamestown.
On the season, Munsch is 4-2 with a 2.21 ERA and 58 strikeouts in 36.2 innings (five starts). Munsch has recorded at least six strikeouts in each of his outings in 2019. In his three years with the Bulldogs, Munsch is 12-7 with a 3.35 ERA and 174 strikeouts over 129 innings (24 starts).
Concordia is set to return to action Tuesday with a nine-inning nonconference game at York College. First pitch is slated for 5:30 p.m. CT.
Apr. 16, 2019
YORK, Neb. – This matchup between the Concordia University baseball team and York College looked a lot like the one that took place six days earlier on a cold night in Seward. This time around, the two sides used a combined 11 pitchers in a game that showcased the depth of the Bulldog roster. The host Panthers jumped out to a big lead and held off Concordia, 10-6, in action at Levitt Stadium in York.
The bigger focus for fifth-year head coach Ryan Dupic’s squad is on upcoming conference play as it continues to hunt down the program’s second GPAC title in three years. Said Dupic, “It was a good day to get a lot of guys at bats and innings.” The Bulldogs are now 24-14 overall.
Senior Johnny May took advantage of the opportunity to start in center field and ripped an RBI double in the third and then a two-run homer in the sixth. May, Teyt Johnson, Carson Lindell and Peyton Scott each recorded two hits to lead the offensive attack. Johnson equaled May with three RBIs of his own. Lindell and May scored two runs apiece.
Their offensive output wasn’t quite enough to dig Concordia out of a 10-2 hole that it faced after four innings. Dupic called upon five different pitchers: Clayton Holcomb, Shane Whittaker, Dresden Wilson, Thomas Otte and Adrian Cotton. Bulldog pitching was tagged for three home runs that accounted for seven York runs. Wilson, Otte and Cotton combined to throw four scoreless innings after the damage had been done.
Concordia position player regulars who sat on Tuesday included Keaton Candor, Wade Council, Jesse Garcia, Christian Meza and Logan Ryan.
The Panthers moved to 23-15 overall. Their home runs were delivered by Jake Sola, Luke Jackson and Ethan Lanz. Head coach Brian Walth’s squad reached the opening round of the national tournament in 2018.
Conference play will pick back up this Thursday and Friday with a four-game series at defending GPAC regular season and tournament champion Northwestern (16-19, 10-9 GPAC). First pitch from Orange City, Iowa, is set for 4 p.m. on Thursday and 1 p.m. on Friday. Concordia will enter the Easter weekend with a four-game lead atop the GPAC standings.
Apr. 18, 2019
ORANGE CITY, Iowa – One blowout. One white knuckler. Either way, this Concordia University baseball team always believes it can win. The GPAC leading Bulldogs thumped Northwestern, 14-3, and then survived a potential walk-off winner in a play at the plate in a 5-4, nine-inning game two victory. It was day one of two in Orange City, Iowa, for a Concordia team that moved a step closer to locking up a conference championship.
The magic number has shrunk to three for fifth-year head coach Ryan Dupic’s squad. In other words, the Bulldogs (26-14, 20-2 GPAC) need a combination of three wins/Jamestown losses and they will be able to claim the program’s second GPAC regular season title in three years.
“As we were going through the second game I was thinking, I’m thankful we’re in a game like this,” Dupic said. “We need to be in games like this. You can almost feel the guys become more alert and how they compete a little bit more when they’re in a tight matchup like that. It’s just fun to feel that sense of excitement in the dugout to know that every pitch is a big pitch and every at bat is a big at bat. They found ways to win again.”
The second game on Thursday (April 18) could have easily gone the other way. The action especially intensified in the bottom of the seventh of game two when a base hit to center eluded Keaton Candor. The Red Raiders (16-21, 10-11 GPAC) waved around Ben De Boer, only to watch him get gunned down at the plate on a relay from shortstop Logan Ryan. An inning later, Concordia closer Dylan DuRee managed to get out of another jam and send the contest to a ninth inning (scheduled as a seven-inning game).
Finally the Bulldogs broke the tie in the ninth. The sequence went: Wade Council walk, Christian Meza single, Evan Bohman sacrifice bunt, Jesse Garcia intentional walk and Luciano DePamphilis RBI fielder’s choice. Then in the bottom half, DuRee allowed a two-out single, but shut the door by getting Colton Herald to pop out to short.
There is plenty of credit to go around after the latest pair of victories. In that second game, Lukas Diehm got the start and fanned 11 hitters in 5.1 innings with one earned run (four total runs) allowed. Of course, Concordia would not be talking about a sweep without the cool-under-pressure throw to the plate in the seventh.
“This was the best Lukas has ever been,” Dupic said. “He really had his breaking ball going. He was really sharp and focused from the onset. Really proud of the way he pitched. It was fun to see … Logan got the relay and he was very composed. I knew we had him because you could see he didn’t rush it and he wasn’t too slow. Logan made some huge plays defensively for us.”
Meza had a very patient evening that included five walks and a hit-by-pitch. His hit in the ninth inning of game two marked the 200th of his career. Meza joins Zak Goodrich (234 hits) as the only players in program history with 200 or more hits. Meza’s night was representative of a lineup that grinded out at bats and reached base a combined 24 times on either walks or hit-by-pitches against Northwestern pitching.
The Bulldogs blew game one wide open with a nine-run sixth inning. Two hits apiece in the opener were turned in by Candor (2-for-3, one run, two RBIs), DePamphilis (2-for-4, two runs, three RBIs) and Ryan (2-for-4, one run). Council also knocked in three runs.
Dupic got a quality outing from game one starting pitcher Sasha Jabusch, who covered six innings, allowed three runs on eight hits and two walks and struck out eight. Dresden Wilson pitched a scoreless seventh inning to wrap up the win. In game two, DuRee threw 3.2 innings of relief without surrendering a run and picked up the victory.
The four-game series in Orange City will continue on Friday with a 1 p.m. CT first pitch. With Jamestown (14-6 GPAC) in action at home versus Morningside on Friday, it is possible for Concordia to sew up the conference title before leaving northwest Iowa.
Apr. 19, 2019
ORANGE CITY, Iowa – This just wasn’t their day. The Concordia University baseball team fell twice in Orange City, Iowa, on Friday (April 19) despite a dozen strikeouts in game one from lefty hurler Jason Munsch. Host Northwestern took advantage of some sloppy Concordia defense in a 5-3 decision in game one and then rode pitcher Brady Roberts to a 7-1 victory in game two. The two sides split the four-game series that began with a Bulldog doubleheader sweep on Thursday.
Fifth-year head coach Ryan Dupic’s squad will have to wait until at least next weekend if it is to claim the GPAC regular season title. Concordia now stands at 20-4 in conference play (26-16 overall), two losses in front of Jamestown (16-6 GPAC) atop the GPAC standings.
“They played better than us,” Dupic said. “We obviously had one really bad inning in the first game that got us behind. They pitched really well and swung it well in game two. They just beat us. Hopefully we’ll bounce back. We’ll get a little break here, get charged up and try to have a good final week of the regular season.”
Fresh off a 16-strikeout performance against Jamestown, Munsch again flashed dominant stuff. He cruised through the first three frames of game one before allowing back-to-back singles to begin the bottom of the fourth. That’s when things got nutty. In that frame, the Red Raiders sent nine hitters to the plate and scored each of their five runs while capitalizing on a pair of errors and a third strike that got away from the catcher. Munsch allowed only one earned run on six hits in a six-inning complete game.
In a nine-inning game two, Roberts covered eight frames and held down a typically potent Bulldog lineup. Concordia managed nine hits in the contest, but struggled to string them together. The Bulldogs were actually on the board first when Beau Dorman singled home Luciano DePamphilis in the top of the second. Dorman and Christian Meza collected two hits each in the capper.
The offensive highlight of game one came in the top of the sixth when Teyt Johnson connected for a two-run homer. Unfortunately, those were the final runs of the game for the Bulldogs, who did not fully take advantage of their 10 hits. Concordia had two runners gunned down at the plate in the top of the fourth when it held a 1-0 lead at the time. DePamphilis, Meza and Jesse Garcia posted two hits apiece in game one.
The defending GPAC regular season and tournament champion, Northwestern (18-21, 12-11 GPAC) has now won six of its last eight within the conference. It started two freshmen on the mound on Friday in Evan Olesen and Roberts. Olesen fired a seven-inning complete game in the opener. The Red Raiders first gained the lead in game two on a two-run homer by Josh Fakkema in the bottom of the second. They never looked back.
Just four games remain the regular season, which will conclude next Friday and Saturday (April 26-27) when the Bulldogs will host Dordt (5-22, 2-18 GPAC) in a four-game series. Concordia still is in good position as it looks forward to the weekend home stand.
“I think the break over Easter and the chance to recharge will be good for us,” Dupic said. “We can start fresh and let the dust settle. Today was an unfortunate day, but I think we’ll be okay.”
Apr. 23, 2019
SEWARD, Neb. – The magic number for the Concordia University baseball team in regards to clinching the GPAC regular season title stands at two with four games left until postseason play. Head coach Ryan Dupic’s first place squad currently owns a three-game lead over Jamestown at the top of the GPAC standings. The Bulldogs are getting set to entertain Dordt at Plum Creek Park for a four-game series this Friday and Saturday. Meanwhile, the Jimmies will close GPAC regular season action with four games at Doane.
Concordia has rebounded impressively after placing seventh in the conference in 2018. Now the Bulldogs are on the cusp of taking the league’s regular season crown for the second time in three years (picked fifth in the preseason). The 2017 team went 19-9 in league play while claiming the program’s first conference championship since head athletic trainer Randy Baack played for the 1986 NIAC champions. In its first season as a GPAC member, Jamestown entered the league as the conference favorite following a stellar 2018 campaign that saw them go 45-11 overall and come within one game of reaching the NAIA World Series.
Concordia is coming off a rare instance in which it was swept in a doubleheader. It fell twice at Northwestern on April 19 as part of a four-game series split in Orange City, Iowa. For most of conference play, the Bulldog pitching staff has been much too brilliant to allow for back-to-back defeats. In GPAC games only, Concordia’s team ERA of 2.32 is far and away the best in the league (No. 2 stands at 4.13). In terms of results, the top two starters have been juniors Jason Munsch (4-3, 2.11 ERA, 42.2 IP) and Jake Fosgett (6-1, 3.32 ERA, 43.1 IP), who are both capable of making hitters look foolish. Their strikeout rates per nine innings – Munsch (14.77) and Fosgett (13.50) – are video game like.
The lineup is also more than adequate with right fielder Wade Council (.331 BA) and second baseman Christian Meza (.358 BA) having been the team’s most consistent performers. Last week Meza joined Zak Goodrich (234 career hits) as the only two players in program history to reach 200 hits in a career. In addition, Meza has progressively improved his approach at the plate and currently has the highest walk rate of his career. In the middle of the lineup, freshman Jesse Garcia was solid last week with at least one hit in each of the six games (including April 15 versus Morningside). Garcia tops the team with 34 RBIs while his seven homers are even with Keaton Candor for a Bulldog best.
Dordt hasn’t found much of a rhythm this season. Within conference play, the Defenders rank tied for 10th in runs per game (3.22) and 10th in ERA (7.77). Dordt’s GPAC wins have come against Midland (twice) and Hastings. The player in the Defender lineup to watch out for is second baseman Logan Cline, who is hitting .352 with 10 extra base hits. As a team, the Defenders have hit only four home runs this season and are slugging .315.
In between games of the doubleheader on Saturday, Concordia will honor its senior class of 10 (names listed below). With the help of the seniors over the past four seasons, the program has gone a combined 113-87 with the aforementioned GPAC title in 2017. In that senior group, Meza and shortstop Logan Ryan have been mainstays in the middle infield while Dylan DuRee and Tanner Wauhob have enjoyed solid senior seasons as part of the impressive pitching staff.
Seniors to be honored on Saturday:
Russell Bunting (Kingsburg, Calif.)
Dylan DuRee (Elkhorn, Neb.)
Clayton Holcomb (Johnston, Iowa)
Johnny May (Johnston, Iowa)
Christian Meza (San Diego, Calif.)
Jesse Pugh (Steamboat Springs, Colo.)
Logan Ryan (Johnston, Iowa)
Jared Schipper (Omaha, Neb.)
Tanner Wauhob (Sioux City, Iowa)
Keith Wolverton (Seward, Neb.)
No matter what happens in the final week of the regular season, the Bulldogs are guaranteed to host a four-team pod as part of the GPAC tournament May 2-4. The GPAC postseason championship game will be held on Tuesday, May 7.
Apr. 27, 2019
SEWARD, Neb. – The Concordia University baseball team keeps inching closer to locking up an outright GPAC title. Meanwhile, visiting Dordt simply wants to be a spoiler this weekend. The Bulldogs began a four-game series with the Defenders on Saturday in what resulted in a doubleheader split. After running away with a 13-7 victory in game one, Concordia hitters were unable to solve pitcher Logan Horne in a 2-1 game two loss.
The magic number is down to one for head coach Ryan Dupic’s squad. It’s as simple now as the Bulldogs (27-17, 21-5 GPAC) needing a win or Jamestown (17-7 GPAC) loss to ensure a Concordia championship all to itself. Dupic’s bunch clearly remains in the driver’s seat.
“Hopefully they’re still excited,” Dupic said of his team’s current mindset. “It’s been a fun year. We’ve put ourselves in a really good position. I’m excited to come play Saturday, get back out here and give it another shot.”
Throughout conference play, the Bulldogs have found many different ways to win games. It just didn’t happen in the capper on Friday. Horne tossed a nine-inning masterpiece for Dordt (8-26, 5-21 GPAC), which has meddled all season near the bottom of the GPAC standings. Trailing 2-1 in the bottom of the ninth, Concordia got a leadoff single from Luciano DePamphilis and eventually moved a runner to third with two outs. Horne sealed the Defender win by getting Ben Berg to fly out to right.
Horne even out-dueled Jake Fosgett, who has been nearly unbeatable in GPAC play. Fosgett covered six innings, allowed only one run and struck out nine hitters. To Dordt’s credit, it put Fosgett in a number of high stress situations.
“Game two was a pretty good ballgame in terms of pitching,” Dupic said. “(Horne) kept us off balance and really executed his pitches. He had really good command of his fastball. He was working away all day and threw three pitches for strikes. We hit a couple balls hard with guys in scoring position – just didn’t quite get it to go our way.”
The lack of offense in game two (which saw Wade Council just miss a potential go-ahead grand slam) was a surprise after Concordia had a parade of baserunners in game one. In that first contest, the Bulldogs recorded 11 hits and drew 10 walks and five hit-by-pitches. Ben Berg went 3-for-3 with a pair of RBIs and Council and Christian Meza also knocked in two runs apiece. It was a strong day for shortstop Logan Ryan, who went 3-for-5 (two bunt hits), reached base five times and collected two RBIs.
Game one starting pitcher Jason Munsch cruised along through four innings before struggling mightily in the fifth. Munsch still managed seven strikeouts in four innings. He was relieved by Ryan Samuelson, who did not surrender an earned run in three innings.
If all goes well, the Bulldogs will be celebrating a championship at some point on Saturday evening. The program will also use the day to honor a senior class of 10 in between games. Due to weather concerns, first pitch on Saturday (April 27) between Concordia and Dordt was moved to 2 p.m. CT.
Apr. 27, 2019
SEWARD, Neb. – For the second time in three seasons, the Concordia University baseball program can call itself champion of the GPAC regular season. Unlike the title two years ago, the Bulldogs got to celebrate this one at home with a dogpile just to the left of the mound. That seventh place finish from a year ago faded with the unforgiving wind gusts on a brisk day at Plum Creek Park. Wins by 3-0 scores in both ends of the doubleheader versus Dordt warmed the soul on Saturday afternoon (April 27).
Fifth-year head coach Ryan Dupic’s squad will tackle the postseason with an overall mark of 29-17. At 23-5 in conference play, Concordia owns the GPAC record of league victories in a single season (GPAC schedule expanded to 28 games in 2017).
“I really wanted it - and I really wanted it for them,” Dupic said of the latest championship. “They've worked so hard and they've really done the things we've asked them to do and even beyond that. When it happened, I just sat back and watched and soaked it in. It’s still kind of a blur, but very happy for them and what they got to experience.”
It was a senior day to remember for star second baseman Christian Meza, who collected five hits on a day that was decidedly unfavorable for hitters. Bulldog pitchers took full advantage of the situation. It was rather fitting that Concordia clinched a conference title with stellar pitching. To say Sasha Jabusch dominated on Saturday is putting it lightly. He fanned 17 hitters (one off a school single game record) in a seven-inning two-hit shutout.
In a season of masterful pitching performances, this one takes the cake. The Bulldogs finished the regular season with an ERA of 2.31 in GPAC games. The league’s top pitching staff was a major reason why a celebration took place in the middle of the diamond on Saturday.
“They’ve been awesome,” Dupic said of the pitching staff. “Sasha was just amazing today, probably as good as I’ve ever seen him. Obviously it was a tough day to score today. In that type of situation he was able to pound the zone with a few different pitches and keep guys off balance. They have pitched so well all year. They deserve all the credit.”
If Concordia was feeling any pressure to get that clinching win out of the way, it dissipated in the bottom of the first of game one when Meza delivered an RBI double and then scored on a sacrifice fly by Evan Bohman. The Bulldogs could have stopped there with Jabusch mowing down the Defenders (8-28, 5-23 GPAC). Meza wasn’t done. He recorded another RBI double an inning later as part of a 3-for-3 effort in game one.
Meza is now at 210 hits in a career that will put him with the all-time greats in program history. He and fellow senior in shortstop Logan Ryan have been constants in the middle of the diamond. Another senior, Tanner Wauhob, fired six shutout innings in the game two victory on Saturday.
“It was amazing. It’s been a fun year,” Meza said. “It’s a long season. We’ve been grinding all year. It makes me so happy to do this with these guys. It’s really special.”
Game two was locked in a 0-0 tie until Keaton Candor delivered an RBI single in the bottom of the fourth. Then in the sixth, Ryan and Meza emerged with an RBI base hit apiece. The timely hits were enough. Jared Schipper worked two scoreless innings in relief and Dylan DuRee nailed down the final two outs for the save.
With the regular season in the books, the No. 1 seed in the GPAC tournament and a national tournament berth locked up, Dupic will allow a bit of time for his guys to enjoy this. Says Dupic, “I’m going to give them a day or two. We talk about staying on an even keel and taking it a day at a time – I’m going to let them enjoy this a little bit.”
The GPAC tournament bracket will be announced early next week after all regular season games have been played. Concordia will host one of the two four-team pods in the GPAC postseason.
Apr. 29, 2019
SEWARD, Neb. – Postseason baseball has arrived across the NAIA landscape. As a reward for winning the GPAC regular season title, the Concordia University baseball team has earned the right to host one of the two four-team pods for the GPAC tournament that begins on Thursday (full schedule at bottom). No matter what happens this weekend, head coach Ryan Dupic’s squad has already locked up an automatic bid to play at in the NAIA National Championship Opening Round (May 13-16).
The Concordia Bracket of the GPAC tournament will include No. 4 Dakota Wesleyan, No. 5 Mount Marty and No. 8 Doane. On the other side, second-seeded Jamestown will welcome No. 3 Midland, No. 6 Northwestern and No. 7 Morningside to North Dakota for the Jamestown Bracket.
The Bulldogs took up residence at the top of the GPAC standings wire-to-wire while riding a 15-0 start to conference play to the program’s second regular season title in three years. Fittingly, Concordia clinched the conference on a day when its pitchers combined for 16 shutout innings. In the GPAC title clinching win on April 27, junior lefty Sasha Jabusch was beyond dominant in a two-hit shutout that featured 17 strikeouts. In GPAC games only, the Bulldog pitching staff led the league in ERA (2.31 – next closest was 4.06), lowest opponent batting average (.210), strikeouts (265) and fewest hits allowed (165).
“They’ve pitched so well all year,” Dupic said after the regular season’s final doubleheader. “I’m very proud of them. They deserve all the credit.”
It’s not crazy to call this the best pitching staff in program history. Consider the numbers of the team’s main four starters in the rotation: Jake Fosgett (4-2, 3.10 ERA, 49.1 IP, 13.5 K/9 IP), Jabusch (6-2, 3.00 ERA, 51 IP, 11.6 K/9 IP), Jason Munsch (4-3, 3.09 ERA, 46.2 IP, 14.9 K/9 IP) and Tanner Wauhob (6-2, 4.41 ERA, 51 IP, 8.6 K/9 IP). Then you also have to factor in the team’s three most counted upon relievers: Dylan DuRee (0.69 ERA, 26 IP, six saves), Ryan Samuelson (0.45 ERA, 20 IP, 22 K) and Jared Schipper (2.67 ERA, 30.1 IP, 25 K). Together they have helped break a program single season strikeout record with 421 as a staff.
It's a staff that should make Concordia formidable in a tournament setting. The Bulldog offense is also more than capable, led by star senior second baseman Christian Meza, who wants to keep his career going as long as possible. He collected five hits on a cold and windy day at Plum Creek Park this past Saturday to push his career hit total to 210. With a .360 average, Meza leads the team in hitting. Three other regulars are batting above .300: Wade Council (.321), Jesse Garcia (.315) and Logan Ryan (.303).
Dakota Wesleyan (22-21, 16-12 GPAC)
Head Coach: John Greicar (5th year)
Team ERA: 5.26
Top Hitter: Wes Anderson (.361 BA, .459 OBP, .486 SLG, 12 2B, 2 HR, 21 RBI)
Top Pitcher: Dominique Boerger (8-3, 1.83 ERA, 68.2 IP, 72 K, .221 OPP BA)
Synopsis: Dakota Wesleyan increased its GPAC win total from seven in 2018 to 16 in 2019 with the help of a pitching staff that has been solid. Dominique Boerger is a legitimate ace and Gunnar Johnson provides a nice No. 2 in the rotation. The Tigers recently went on a run in which they won nine of 11 in conference play.
Doane (18-28, 12-16 GPAC)
Head Coach: Josh Oltmans (3rd year)
Team ERA: 6.96
Top Hitter: Trent Jeary (.331 BA, .422 OBP, .455 SLG, 8 2B, 3 HR, 23 RBI)
Top Pitcher: Bradley Bero (4-2, 5.07 ERA, 55 IP, 63 K, .277 OPP BA)
Synopsis: Doane entered the final weekend of the regular season appearing to be a longshot to reach the GPAC tournament, but it earned a four-game split with Jamestown and got some help with Briar Cliff dropping three of four at Hastings – so here the Tigers are with a second life. Concordia swept four games from Doane during the regular season, but each game was decided by one or two run margins. The Tigers have some offensive firepower, but they have allowed 314 runs in 325.2 innings.
Mount Marty (25-19, 16-12 GPAC)
Head Coach: Andy Bernatow (15th year)
Team ERA: 6.06
Top Hitter: Mason Townsend (.386 BA, .456 OBP, .638 SLG, 14 2B, 6 HR, 37 RBI)
Top Pitcher: Blake Svoboda (7-2, 3.84 ERA, 58.2 IP, 83 K, .180 OPP BA)
Synopsis: The Lancers tied for third in the GPAC regular season standings with a surge in the second half of the conference schedule. Mount Marty won 10 conference games in a row before falling three-straight times to Northwestern to conclude the regular season. Andy Bernatow’s club possesses one of the GPAC’s top hitters in Mason Townsend, who leads an offense averaging more than six runs per game.
Thursday, May 2
Game 1 – No. 4 Dakota Wesleyan (22-21, 16-12) vs. No. 5 Mount Marty (25-19, 16-12), 3 p.m.
Game 2 – No. 1 Concordia (29-17, 23-5) vs. No. 8 Doane (18-28, 12-16), 6 p.m.
Friday, May 3
Game 3 – Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner, 2 p.m.
Game 4 – Game 1 loser vs. Game 2 loser, 5 p.m.
Game 5 – Game 4 winner vs. Game 3 loser, 8 p.m.
Saturday, May 4
Game 6 – Game 3 winner vs. Game 5 winner, 4 p.m.
Game 7 – If necessary (game 6 winner/loser), 7 p.m.
Tuesday, May 7 – GPAC Championship Game
Concordia Bracket winner vs. Jamestown Bracket winner, Time TBD
Jabusch K's his way to National Pitcher of the Week honors
Apr. 30, 2019
SEWARD, Neb. – For his role in the GPAC regular season title clinching victory, junior Sasha Jabusch has been named both the NAIA National Pitcher of the Week and the GPAC/Hauff Mid-America Sports Pitcher of the Week, as announced on Tuesday (April 30). Of the seven GPAC Pitcher of the Week awards handed out this season, Concordia hurlers are responsible for four of them. Jake Fosgett (twice) and Jason Munsch have also collected the same honor this season. Jabusch is the first to earn a national award.
In a season full of dominant pitching performances by Bulldogs, Jabusch may have put together the most impressive performance of any. In a seven-inning, two-hit shutout of Dordt on April 27, Jabusch recorded a career high 17 strikeouts (one fewer than the school single season record). He struck out the side three times as part of the masterpiece. The native of Kelso, Wash., is 6-2 with a 3.00 ERA and 66 strikeouts in 51 innings this season.
Jabusch was an impact addition as a transfer for a staff that ranks as perhaps the best in program history. In conference games only, the Bulldogs led the GPAC in ERA (2.31), opponent batting average (.210), strikeouts (265) and fewest hits allowed (165). The overall strikeout total of 421 by the staff this season is a new school record.
Head coach Ryan Dupic’s squad will begin GPAC postseason play as the No. 1 seed on Thursday when it will host eighth-seeded Doane at 6 p.m. CT.
2019 Concordia GPAC Pitchers of the Week
April 30 – *Sasha Jabusch
April 16 – Jason Munsch
April 9 – Jake Fosgett
March 26 – Jake Fosgett
*NAIA National Pitcher of the Week
May. 2, 2019
SEWARD, Neb. – Keaton Candor and Ben Berg cleaned up in the bottom third of the lineup and the Concordia University baseball team capitalized on a bushel of walks in a blowout victory on day one of the 2019 GPAC tournament. The top-seeded Bulldogs looked like conference champions in pummeling visiting Doane, 12-1, at Plum Creek Park on Thursday (May 2) evening. Both Berg and Jesse Garcia homered for the victors.
Head coach Ryan Dupic’s squad has an opportunity to add to the trophy case after capturing the GPAC regular season title. The 2019 team has moved to 30-17 overall while becoming the second in program history to reach the 30-win mark.
“We want to keep some momentum going. We want to play good baseball,” Dupic said. “That’s been the case all year. Our focus has been on execution and playing well. Obviously it’s a nice opportunity to be able to host at our field and play this at home. It’s a nice night and it’s a chance to go play and compete. Fortunately we played well today.”
Part of the key on Thursday was simply waiting out wild Doane pitching. Tiger starter Travis Cowan lasted only 1.2 innings due to his control struggles. One of his four free passes came back to roost in the bottom of the first when Garcia hit a towering two-run homer to left. Doane wound up using six different pitchers who combined to allow nine walks and one hit batter.
Following Garcia’s blast, a great deal of the offensive production came courtesy of Berg and Candor. Both have gone through some peaks and valleys, but they stung the ball on Thursday. Berg went 3-for-4 with a home run, two doubles and five RBIs. Meanwhile, Candor reached base in all five plate appearances (3-for-3) while collecting two runs, two doubles and two RBIs. They were the headliners for a lineup that scored in six of the eight innings it batted in.
“That was probably the best game of my life, to be honest with you,” Berg said. “After the first at bat, (brother and assistant coach) Bryce (Berg) pulled me aside and told me to take every at bat pitch-by-pitch and see what happens. I was just trying to hit the ball hard. We did that and I guess it paid off today.”
Berg has had a front row seat for viewing the GPAC’s best pitching staff. On this particular night, he had the honor of catching lefty ace Jason Munsch, who became the first player in program history to record 200 career strikeouts. Munsch worked 6.2 innings versus Doane, surrendering one unearned run on four hits and two walks. He struck out eight. Another lefty in Dresden Wilson then came on to get the final seven outs.
At the top of the lineup, Wade Council added two hits for the Bulldogs. Evan Bohman, Christian Meza and Logan Ryan each drove in a run apiece as part of a 12-hit attack. Together they helped Concordia move to 5-0 this season against eighth-seeded Doane (18-29). The Tigers got their only run on a passed ball that occurred on a strikeout of Eduardo Yanez.
Even in a one versus eight matchup, it’s never easy to know what to expect in a tournament setting. Dupic certainly wouldn’t have predicted such a lopsided victory, but he will gladly take more offensive outings like this one.
“They were awesome,” Dupic said. “They’re both really talented guys (Berg and Candor). For them to create that lineup depth is huge. I was so proud of the offense today. I thought they did a really good job and had some terrific at bats. When we’re able to get some production up and down the lineup, obviously that puts a lot of pressure on the opposing team.”
Concordia can really put itself in the driver’s seat of its own bracket if it can win again on Friday afternoon. The Bulldogs will be up against fourth-seeded Dakota Wesleyan (23-21) in a contest set for a 2 p.m. CT first pitch in Seward. Three games will be played at Plum Creek Park on Friday.
May. 4, 2019
SEWARD, Neb. – The blood pressure of Bulldog fans may have risen the past couple of days, but members of this Concordia University baseball team never seem phased. If you can believe it, a lightning delay of nearly one hour seemed to come at just the right time for the Bulldogs, who rallied from a 4-0 deficit to defeat Doane, 6-4, on day three of GPAC tournament action on Saturday (May 4).
Fifth-year head coach Ryan Dupic’s squad went 3-0 the past few days to advance out of the Concordia Bracket pod and into the conference postseason championship game. The eighth-seeded and upset-minded Tigers (20-30) would have had to defeat the Bulldogs (32-17; 6-0 vs. Doane) twice to keep their own season alive.
“I didn’t say a word (to the guys),” Dupic said of his actions during the delay that occurred with Doane leading 4-0. “To be honest, their pitcher was rolling. He was fantastic. Obviously the delay hurt them and hurt his rhythm. That was clearly a break for us. To the guys’ credit, they took advantage of it and were able to get some big swings off and have some good at bats.”
Dupic admits that his team did not play an all-around crisp game. Concordia committed four errors and made starting pitcher Jake Fosgett work harder than he should have had to during a three-run Tiger fifth inning. On the flip side, Brady McMurray made only his fourth start this season for Doane and had Concordia hitters looking perplexed through the first seven frames.
Following the lightning delay, play resumed in the top of the eighth. McMurray did not look like the same pitcher. In fact, he never retired another hitter. The sequence went Jesse Garcia single, Teyt Johnson RBI triple, Luciano DePamphilis RBI single and Keaton Candor walk. That was it for McMurray, but the Bulldogs were not done yet.
Carter Cummins allowed Ben Berg to deliver an RBI single that one-hopped the fence in left. At that point, the Tigers were grasping on to a 4-3 lead. With the bases full, Cummins coaxed both Wade Council and Christian Meza into pop outs. The momentum was perhaps about to swing back the other way – until Evan Bohman drilled a two-run, go-ahead single to right center.
Joked Bohman, “I was a little mad at Wade and Meza for not getting it done. They’ve gotten it done a lot before. I think if you put any guy in that spot (that I was in), we don’t expect anything less. Anybody’s going to get that hit and it just happened to be me today.”
The late outburst was reminiscent of the rally Concordia put together on Friday to defeat Dakota Wesleyan, 6-3. The latest comeback was aided by the continued hot hitting of Bulldog catchers. Berg went 3-for-5 with an RBI on Saturday. For some insurance, Keaton Candor blasted a solo homer to center in the ninth inning for the game’s final tally. Seven Concordia hitters notched exactly one hit.
Thomas Otte pitched a scoreless seventh inning in relief and earned the win. The reliable Dylan DuRee recorded the final six outs and picked up his eighth save of the season. Fosgett showed really good stuff once again, as his 11 strikeouts in six innings indicated. In two games against Doane at the GPAC tournament, Bulldog pitchers were able to fan Tiger slugger Eduardo Yanez eight times.
Who knows how this would have ended up without the delay on Saturday. Said Bohman, “We just stayed us. We just laughed in the dugout a little bit. That’s honestly the best thing that could have happened. We had some bad at bats, but we didn’t let it beat ourselves. Jesse had that 0-2 count and got on base and it started from there.”
As winner of their own Concordia Bracket, the Bulldogs now look forward to hosting second-seeded Jamestown (34-16) at 6 p.m. CT on Tuesday (May 7) in the GPAC championship game. Concordia and Jamestown have already secured the league’s two automatic bids to the opening round of the national tournament (May 13-16). The two sides split a doubleheader in Seward on April 13 when both ends of the twin bill were decided by a single run.
May. 6, 2019
SEWARD, Neb. – A rainy forecast for Tuesday night in Seward has thrown a curveball in regards to the GPAC baseball postseason championship game. GPAC and Concordia officials have decided to move the one nine-inning contest to Bob Tereshinski Stadium at Riverside Field in Yankton, S.D., (home field of Mount Marty) with first pitch at 12 p.m. CT on Tuesday (May 7). As the top seed in the bracket, the Bulldogs were scheduled to play the game at Plum Creek Park. Instead, Concordia and Jamestown will meet at the aforementioned neutral site. Concordia will be the home team on the scoreboard.
GPAC Baseball Championship Game
♦ Tuesday, May 7 | 12 p.m. CT
♦ Bob Tereshinski Stadium at Riverside Field | Yankton, S.D.
♦ Live coverage: Webcast (link could change) | Stats | ESPN Jamestown (Jamestown radio)
♦ Admission: $8 for adults, $3 for K-12
Head coaches Ryan Dupic of Concordia and Tom Hager of Jamestown have already guided their respective squads to national tournament berths. The Bulldogs locked up their spot in the opening round by winning the GPAC regular season title. The league’s second automatic bid is awarded to either the GPAC tournament winner (if a team other than the regular season champion) or the team that placed second in the regular season standings. The Jimmies have been a national tournament regular under Hager, who led the program to the NAIA World Series in 2004 and 2008. Meanwhile, Dupic steered Concordia to its first ever appearance at nationals in 2017.
“They’re very good, they’re well-coached and they have good talent,” Dupic said of Jamestown after wrapping up the Concordia Bracket last week. “They pitch and they defend and they put pressure on you offensively. They also hit with some power. They’re a very versatile team. It should be a very good ballgame. We’ll go out there and compete and do the best we can.”
The Bulldogs have made it to this point while following the lead of a dominant pitching staff and with the help of timely hitting. Concordia advanced out of its own bracket with a pair of wins over eighth-seeded Doane and one over fourth-seeded Dakota Wesleyan. The final two wins of this past weekend required the Bulldogs to rally from late deficits. In those contests, Concordia tallied 11 of its 12 combined runs in the eighth and ninth innings. Game-winning hits were delivered by Teyt Johnson (solo homer vs. DWU) and Evan Bohman (two-run single vs. Doane).
The Bulldogs have reason to believe they are well-equipped for a tournament setting considering their pitching depth. Dupic used his top three starters last week: Jason Munsch, Sasha Jabusch and Jake Fosgett, in that order. They combined to cover 19.2 innings with five earned runs allowed while continuing a season long theme of missing bats. The strikeout rates are off the charts this season. Munsch has 85 strikeouts in 53.1 innings (14.34/nine innings). Fosgett has 85 strikeouts in 55.1 innings (13.83/nine innings). Jabusch has 75 strikeouts in 58 innings (11.64/nine innings). They have helped Concordia set a new single season record with 458 strikeouts as a staff. It should be mentioned that Dylan DuRee (0.62 ERA in 29 innings) and Ryan Samuelson (0.43 ERA in 21 innings) have been stellar out of the bullpen.
Offensively, someone new seems to surface with the clutch hit each game. Of course, GPAC Player of the Year candidate Christian Meza has been a reliable source of production his entire career. He leads the team in batting average (.352) and is coming up on the school career record for RBIs (his 141 RBIs are five shy of Kaleb Geiger’s record of 146). The offense flashed some firepower last week with six home runs over the three games. Meza and four of his teammates are batting .300 or better, including Wade Council (.320), Beau Dorman (.317), Jesse Garcia (.304) and Logan Ryan (.300). In GPAC tournament play, catchers Ben Berg and Dorman have combined to go 9-for-13 with four doubles, two home runs and seven RBIs.
Jamestown’s postseason path to the final has included victories by scores of 8-0 over Morningside, 6-3 over Northwestern and 9-6 over Northwestern again. Hager also threw his top three starting pitchers last week: Kensaku Akiya (7-0, 3.63 ERA, 62 IP), Dakota Nelson (3-4, 3.34 ERA, 67.1 IP) and Tanner Roundy (3-1, 3.54 ERA, 56 IP). The Jimmies are a balanced team that ranks second in the GPAC in both runs per game (6.42) and ERA (4.48). Drake Pilat is their leading hitter in terms of batting average (.368) while Jaden Yackley supplies extra base power (18 doubles and five home runs). The Jimmies regrouped this season after losing several of their top arms from a 2018 squad that came up one win short of advancing to the NAIA World Series.
Opening round qualifiers and brackets are scheduled to be announced by the NAIA at 4 p.m. CT on Thursday via a selection show on the NAIA’s Facebook page. This year’s opening round host locations are Williamsburg, Ky., Montgomery, Ala., Henderson, Tenn., Lawrenceville, Ga., Shreveport, Ga., Macon, Ga., Miami Gardens, Fla., Kingsport, Tenn., and Santa Barbara, Calif. The opening rounds will take place May 13-16 with the Avista-NAIA Baseball World Series to follow May 24-31 in Lewiston, Idaho.
May. 7, 2019
YANKTON, S.D. – There was no comeback this time. With a GPAC tournament title on the line, the Concordia University baseball team got very little accomplished offensively on Tuesday (May 7) afternoon at Bob Tereshinski Stadium in Yankton, S.D. Star of the game Dru Fitz and the University of Jamestown celebrated a 3-0 victory to deny the Bulldogs, who made their second GPAC postseason final appearance in three seasons.
Fifth-year head coach Ryan Dupic’s squad had hoped to complete a sweep of conference championships after seizing the regular season title. An automatic national qualifier, Concordia will take an overall record of 32-18 into the NAIA opening round.
“We did pitch pretty well. We obviously didn’t field our positions well and that got us in trouble,” Dupic said. “We made a couple other mistakes defensively. Just couldn’t get much going on their pitcher obviously. It just wasn’t quite our day today.”
Early on, it was Bulldog lefty hurler Jason Munsch who dazzled by striking out the first six Jimmies hitters he faced. Dupic used four different pitchers to limit Jamestown to a grand total of three hits. Concordia came away from this outing feeling like it gifted the opposition two runs in the fourth. A leadoff walk and a pair of throwing errors (one by Munsch and one by Christian Meza) crippled the Bulldogs in that frame.
On the other side, Fitz whirled a four-hit, nine-inning shutout in a masterful performance. He struck out only two Bulldogs, but recorded 11 fly outs and 14 ground outs in a snappy game that took less than two-hours-and-15 minutes. The best scoring chance for Concordia came in the fourth when Jesse Garcia and Teyt Johnson delivered back-to-back singles with one out. In the ninth, Keaton Candor flied out to the wall in center.
Munsch covered five innings before the game was turned over to the bullpen. In relief, Ryan Samuelson, Tanner Wauhob and Dylan DuRee helped keep the Bulldogs within arm’s reach of the Jimmies (35-16). Fitz was just too good. He set down the final 17 hitters he faced.
As the No. 1 seed in the GPAC tournament, Concordia hosted its own pod before reaching the championship game. In postseason play, the Bulldogs defeated Doane twice with a win over Dakota Wesleyan sandwiched in between. Concordia was scheduled to host the GPAC title clash, but rainy conditions in Seward forced the game to be relocated to Yankton.
Action at the NAIA national tournament opening round will begin on Monday (May 13). The NAIA will announce opening round brackets and assignments on Thursday. The Bulldogs could be headed to any of nine pre-determined opening round locations. Concordia and Jamestown are the two automatic qualifiers from the GPAC.
“It’s something we’ll process as we go,” Dupic said of the achievement of qualifying for nationals. “We’re just in the heat of this game right now so we haven’t thought much about that at all. We’ll pick ourselves back up and get ready to watch the (selection) show on Thursday and see where we’re headed. We’re looking forward to having the chance to continue the season and keep playing with these guys.”
May. 8, 2019
SEWARD, Neb. – A GPAC championship season for the Concordia University baseball team has resulted in a major haul of postseason conference awards. One of the top players in program history, senior second baseman Christian Meza has earned the league’s highest distinction by being named GPAC/Hauff Mid-America Sports Player of the Year. In addition, head coach Ryan Dupic has been named GPAC/Hauff Mid-America Sports Coach of the Year for the second time in three seasons.
Meza was joined, among position players, by junior right fielder Wade Council on the all-conference first team. Concordia’s league best pitching staff landed four arms on the first team: senior Dylan DuRee and juniors Jake Fosgett, Jason Munsch and Sasha Jabusch. Freshman designated hitter Jesse Garcia nabbed second team honors. Lastly, senior shortstop Logan Ryan, sophomore reliever Ryan Samuelson and senior starting pitcher Tanner Wauhob garnered honorable mention status.
Dupic has guided the program to GPAC championship seasons in two of the past three years and his tenure has marked the winningest five years in Bulldog baseball history. Since arriving in Seward prior to the 2015 season, Dupic owns a record of 145-107. His 2017 squad was the first in school history to win a GPAC title and the first to advance to and then win an NAIA national championship opening round game. The 2019 squad is also headed to the opening round and is the new program standard bearer for league wins (23) in a single season.
Meza is the first ever Bulldog to be awarded the title of GPAC Player of the Year. Following Tuesday’s conference tournament championship game, Meza now owns school all-time rankings of first in doubles (51), second in hits (213), second in RBIs (141), seventh in runs scored (115) and seventh in batting average (.341). The San Diego native is a two-time first team All-GPAC choice and has three total all-conference honors in his career. This spring, Meza is hitting .343 (57-for-166) with a .447 on-base percentage and .482 slugging percentage. He has totaled 34 runs, 14 doubles, three home runs and 40 RBIs and has a fielding percentage of .951.
Council has moved up to first team from second team All-GPAC honors last season as a sophomore. Not only a first team All-GPAC pick, Council has found his way onto the league’s Gold Glove Team in right field. The Concordia leadoff hitter is batting .312 (54-for-173) with a .397 on-base percentage and .451 slugging percentage. Council has racked up 12 doubles, three triples, two home runs and 31 RBIs this season. In the field, Council has made just one error in 86 chances with nine outfield assists.
DuRee, an Elkhorn, Neb., native, has been lights out at the back end of the bullpen. In 29.2 innings of work this season, he has allowed just two earned runs. DuRee has recorded 33 strikeouts and has held opposing hitters to just a .190 batting average. His eight saves rank as the second highest single season total in program history. DuRee has made 17 appearances on the mound this season after making 10 as a junior.
In is his first season as a starter after transitioning from the bullpen, Fosgett has often been dominant. The native of Carlsbad, Calif., has fanned a career high 11 hitters on four different occasions. He has twice been named a GPAC Pitcher of the Week. Fosgett’s top performance was a two-hit shutout of Briar Cliff that included 11 strikeouts. On the year, Fosgett is 6-2 with a 3.09 ERA and 85 strikeouts in 55.1 innings. Opposing batters are hitting just .215 off of him.
Munsch is now a two-time first team All-GPAC honoree. The lefty from Campbell, Calif., is now 5-4 with a 2.62 ERA and 94 strikeouts in 58.1 innings (10 starts). He has held opposing hitters to a .197 batting average. Munsch is the only pitcher in program history to eclipse 200 strikeouts for a career (currently at 210). In 28 career collegiate starts, Munsch owns a 3.35 ERA over 150.2 innings. He was named the GPAC Pitcher of the Week on April 16 after he posting a career high 16 strikeouts in a win over Jamestown.
Jabusch has made a significant impact in his first season at Concordia after he transferred from Clark College (Wash.). The native of Kelso, Wash., was on the mound when the Bulldogs clinched the GPAC regular season title on April 27. In that contest, Jabusch fired a two-hit shutout and notched a career high 17 strikeouts in a seven-inning complete game versus Dordt. He was subsequently named the GPAC and NAIA National Pitcher of the Week. This spring, Jabusch is 6-2 with a 3.10 ERA and 75 strikeouts (28 walks) in 58 innings. He has held opponents to a .240 batting average.
Garcia has added some thunder to the middle of the lineup in his rookie season. He flashed big power in a three-homer game versus Dakota Wesleyan on March 24. He was then named the GPAC Player of the Week. A patient hitter, Garcia has worked a team high 31 walks while sporting a .456 on-base percentage. His season numbers show a .302 batting average, six doubles, eight home runs, 36 RBIs and a .418 slugging percentage. His eight homers rank on the program’s top 10 list for a single season.
The three honorable mention selections have each been key contributors to the conference championship. A four-year starter at shortstop, Ryan owns the program career record for assists (488) and also ranks fifth in school history in career runs (118). He’s had his best offensive season as a senior, hitting .292 with a .399 on-base percentage. In a relief role, Samuelson has been nearly spotless as his 0.42 ERA in 21.2 innings attests. Samuelson has struck out 23 hitters and has walked only six. Wauhob has been the No. 4 starter for an excellent pitching staff. In nine starts (53.2 innings), Wauhob is 6-2 with a 4.36 ERA and 51 strikeouts.
The Bulldogs will learn of their opening round matchup and site assignment on Thursday when the NAIA announces the brackets. The opening round will run May 13-16.
May. 9, 2019
SEWARD, Neb. – For the second time in three seasons, head coach Ryan Dupic will lead his team into the opening round of the NAIA Baseball National Championship. On Thursday (May 9) afternoon, the Bulldogs learned that they would be headed to Henderson, Tenn., for the start of opening round action on Monday. As the No. 4 seed in the Henderson Bracket, Concordia (32-18) will go head-to-head with fifth-seeded Clarke University (Iowa) at 11 a.m. CT on Monday. The rest of the bracket includes No. 1 seed Oklahoma Wesleyan University, No. 2 seed and host Freed-Hardeman University and No. 3 seed Texas Wesleyan University.
The NAIA Opening Round is made up of nine separate host sites, each with five teams for a total of 45 squads in the entire event. The Bulldogs earned an automatic bid as winner of the GPAC regular season.
Six Concordia players on the current postseason roster saw action when the program made its first-ever national tournament appearance two years ago: Wade Council, Jake Fosgett, 2019 GPAC Player of the Year Christian Meza, Jason Munsch, Logan Ryan and Tanner Wauhob. The highlight of that particular appearance was an 8-7 victory over Jamestown.
Recalls Fosgett, “Last time as a skinny freshman going into that my thought was, ‘You’re pitching in a national tournament and this is probably one of the coolest experiences you’re going to have.’ At that point I was just taking it all in. This year we want to go and show teams what we’ve got, go out there and win some ballgames. We have a good staff with a lot of experience. We want to show teams what we’re all about.”
The opening round consists of a double-elimination format. That means every team is guaranteed to play at least once on both Monday and Tuesday. From a pitching standpoint, Dupic’s 2019 team is more equipped to hold up to the rigors of tournament play. The rotation has been stellar with lefties Sasha Jabusch (6-2, 3.10 ERA, 58 IP, 75 K) and Munsch (5-4, 2.62 ERA, 58.1 IP, 94 K) and righty Fosgett (6-2, 3.09 ERA, 55.1 IP, 85 K) all worthy options as potential game one starters in the national bracket. Those three and ace reliever Dylan DuRee (0.61 ERA in 29.2 IP) accounted for four of the GPAC’s five first team all-conference pitchers.
For Jabusch and the majority of the roster, this excursion down south will be a new experience. Said Jabusch, “It feels great. We get to get out of here and play in good weather and see some great competition. I think we’re going to see exactly how we play as a team and how we can respond from those moments of adversity.”
Clarke (28-21), located in Dubuque, Iowa, defeated Concordia, 19-8, in national tournament action in Hutchinson, Kan., in 2017. The Pride are back in the opening round via an automatic bid (Heart of America Athletic Conference tournament runner up). It seems likely that the Bulldogs will see Clarke ace pitcher Jakob Kirman (10-2, 2.42 ERA, 96.2 IP, 93 K), who has been a workhorse this season. Head coach Dan Spain has guided the Pride to four-straight opening round trips.
The Concordia-Clarke winner will move on and play at 7 p.m. on Monday versus Oklahoma Wesleyan, ranked 12th in the most recent NAIA coaches’ poll. In that same April 30 poll, Freed Hardeman was ranked ninth and Texas Wesleyan checked in at No. 14.
For additional details, visit the NAIA baseball web page HERE. The teams that emerge from the opening round will meet in Lewiston, Idaho, for the Avista-NAIA World Series, May 24-31.
2017 Concordia Opening Round Results
*First national tournament appearance in program history
May 15, 2017 – W, 8-7 vs. Jamestown
May 15, 2017 – L, 8-19 vs. (6) Clarke
May 16, 2017 – L, 11-12 vs. (13) Tabor
May 13-16 | Carnes Field | Henderson, Tenn.
Hosted by Freed-Hardeman
1. Oklahoma Wesleyan
2. Freed-Hardeman (Tenn.)
3. Texas Wesleyan
4. Concordia (Neb.)
5. Clarke (Iowa)
*All times central
Monday, May 13
Game 1: 11 a.m. – No. 4 Concordia (Neb.) vs. No. 5 Clarke (Iowa)
Game 2: 3 p.m. – No. 2 Freed-Hardeman vs. No. 3 Texas Wesleyan
Game 3: 7 p.m. – No. 1 Oklahoma Wesleyan vs. Winner Game 1
Tuesday, May 14
Game 4: 11 a.m. – Loser Game 1 vs. Loser Game 2
Game 5: 3 p.m. – Winner Game 2 vs. Winner Game 3
Game 6: 7 p.m. – Loser Game 3 vs. Winner Game 4
Wednesday, May 15
Game 7: TBA – Loser Game 5 vs. Winner Game 6
Game 8: TBA – Winner Game 5 vs. Winner Game 7
Thursday, May 16
Game 9: TBA – Winner Game 8 vs. Loser Game 8
May. 11, 2019
When the 2018 season ended with a disappointing seventh-place finish in the GPAC, head coach Ryan Dupic convened in the Concordia baseball think tank (also known as his office) along with his assistant coaches. Despite having the 2018 GPAC Pitcher of the Year, the Bulldogs did not quite have the type of pitching depth that Dupic envisioned for the program. To make matters more difficult, Concordia was saying goodbye to its Nos. 1 and 2 starting pitchers.
As it turned out, many of the solutions were right there in front of Dupic and former assistant Casey Hall, as they put together a pitching blueprint for 2019. The master plan worked. On May 8, the GPAC unveiled an all-conference first team with Bulldog pitchers accounting for four of the five spots.
Says senior Dylan DuRee, “I’m not surprised. Those guys have worked their butts off all year long since the day we got back here in the fall. It’s been a nonstop grind. Those guys have earned it and they deserve everything they’ve gotten. You look at our starters, those guys have some nasty pitches. That doesn’t surprise me at all.”
A rival GPAC head coach went so far as to say that Concordia has four aces on a ridiculously deep staff that has set a new standard for the program. The strikeout rate is off the charts – 11.0 per nine innings – and the team ERA within conference play was a preposterous 2.31. Holdovers in DuRee, Jake Fosgett, Jason Munsch, Ryan Samuelson, Jared Schipper and Tanner Wauhob each made noticeable leaps forward this spring while transfer Sasha Jabusch proved to be a tremendous addition.
It all creates a problem for Dupic, but it’s one any coach would like to have. Which of these guys do you turn to when the season is on the line? Who gets the ball in game one of a postseason tournament? Honestly, it’s hard to go wrong with any choice.
“That’s my hardest job right now,” said Dupic of lining up a pitching plan for the upcoming opening round of the national tournament. “Sometimes not everyone is quite 100 percent healthy at this point in the season so it’s about making sure they’re feeling okay. You also have to make decisions that won’t negatively affect the long term. What we have is a group of guys who are flexible and who we can trust to be ready to go when they are called upon.”
Dupic will deflect credit at every opportunity, but he earned the GPAC Coach of the Year award in particular for the way he molded this staff into the best one ever seen at Concordia. Dupic has an eye for pitching and seems to have an innate ability for spotting talent that some others might miss. Fosgett and Munsch were first noticed by Dupic at showcases in California. Fosgett did not get even one other offer to play college baseball. Jabusch nearly gave up baseball, but returned to the sport at a junior college in Washington in 2018.
DuRee and Samuelson threw a combined 15 innings last season and now both sport ERA’s south of 1.00. Wauhob had a tough junior season but put the time in to make for a huge bounce back as a senior. The investment is the key. It’s a group that is so invested that other people on campus felt compelled to ask: why was a baseball team working so hard in the fall? Because that’s what it’s going to take to win a GPAC championship, they answered.
The new kid on the block, Jabusch was the guy on the mound when Concordia clinched the conference regular season title following his own 17-strikeout masterpiece on April 27. Said Jabusch, “Honestly I wasn’t surprised (by the staff’s success). We’ve put a lot of hard work in. We push each other. We’re all trying to one-up each other and do better. If someone has a good outing, the next guy tries to have a better outing. We’ve just had a really good season.”
Jabusch’s two-hit shutout in his final outing of the regular season stands as one of the signature performances of the year. So too does Munsch’s 16-strikeout whiff-a-thon in a 3-2 victory over Jamestown on April 13. Fosgett struck out exactly 11 hitters in four separate starts. Wauhob also tossed a nine-inning gem in a 2-1 win over Doane on April 7.
Fosgett was very nearly the GPAC Pitcher of the Year after coming out of the bullpen as a freshman and sophomore. His development as one of the aces is just another example of the magic Dupic has worked. Dupic helped convince Fosgett that he could make the transition.
“Going from a reliever to a starter you have to be able to perform in more innings,” Fosgett said. “That was one of my biggest thoughts going into the starting role – am I going to be able to do this for the entire year? I knew the talent was there. Just being able to pitch well in that starting role was the biggest question I had to answer.”
The question has been answered in the affirmative. On most staffs, Fosgett would be THE guy. Here, he is one of the guys. It just seemed too fitting on that chilly and windy April 27 doubleheader when Concordia sewed up the GPAC title with a pair of 3-0 shutouts.
On that day that included a doggy pile in between games of a doubleheader, Dupic showered his staff with praise. “They’ve been awesome,” said the fifth-year head coach. “That’s probably as good as I’ve ever seen Sasha. Our pitchers were able to pound the zone and keep guys off balance. That’s such a big deal. They’ve pitched so well all year. I’m very proud of them. They deserve all the credit.”
Okay Coach, but we’re still going to give you at least a little bit of the credit. Guys like DuRee don’t just become lockdown closers without some help along the way. Says DuRee, “He gave us the tools at the beginning of the year. It’s the hard work of the players taking those tools and his help and applying everything. Our guys have worked their butts off, but none of this would have been possible without Coach Dupic.”
Added Jabusch, “This is definitely a new baseball experience. I haven’t had a pitching program like this at any school I’ve been at. I’ve been blessed with a good program that has helped me get to where I am. It’s been a great experience."
The competition will tick upward next week when the Bulldogs jump into national tournament action in Henderson, Tenn. Nothing is going to come easy, but Concordia can take confidence in knowing the type of competitors it can put on the mound. Two years ago the Bulldogs embarked on new territory by reaching the national tournament. They hope this year’s stay can last a bit longer.
Said Fosgett, “Last time as a skinny freshman going into that my thought was, ‘Pitching in the national tournament is probably one of the coolest experiences you’re going to have.’ At that point I was just taking it all in. This year we want to go out and show teams what we’ve got and win some ballgames. I think we have a good staff with a lot of experience. We want to show teams what we’re about.”
The opening round of the NAIA Baseball National Championship will get underway for the Bulldogs at 11 a.m. CT on Monday (May 13). Concordia will take on Clarke (Iowa) in the first game of the Henderson Bracket. All games from Henderson, Tenn., can be viewed live here: https://portal.stretchinternet.com/fhu/.
May. 13, 2019
HENDERSON, Tenn. – Two years after stepping to the mound for the first national tournament game in the history of the Concordia University baseball program, Jason Munsch again took the ball. The junior lefty ace dominated while helping the Bulldogs claim their second ever win at the NAIA Baseball National Championship Opening Round. Concordia wound up playing twice in Henderson, Tenn., on Monday (May 13) with the results being a 3-1 victory over Clarke University (Iowa) and a 14-6 loss to No. 12 Oklahoma Wesleyan University.
The split on day one of the opening round (Henderson Bracket) means fifth-year head coach Ryan Dupic’s squad will fight to keep its season alive on Tuesday. The Bulldogs (33-19) acquitted themselves well in against top notch competition far from home.
“Jason pitched really well obviously the first game and that got us going really well,” Dupic said. “We’ve been here a couple times now – and you have to pitch really well. It’s tough because there are some really good offensive teams here. It challenges you a lot to try to prevent runs. We’re able to do that the first game. Playing with the lead was really big for us.
“Oklahoma Wesleyan can swing it. Our guys did a good job offensively as well. They put a lot of pressure on you and don’t give away easy outs.”
At least to date, Munsch can claim the best pitching performance ever by a Bulldog on the national stage. He struck out six of the first seven hitters he faced on his way to a 12-strikeout performance. Munsch surrendered a lone run in the eighth and allowed only two hits all day. One of those hits came when a Concordia outfielder slipped on what would have been a routine fly out. Munsch fired 114 pitches in his eight-inning gem.
“For me it was just taking it one pitch at a time,” Munsch said. “When I was warming up earlier I didn’t feel the best, but I just knew as long as I trusted myself I’d be all right. I just went out there and did my best to pick up the team.”
The Bulldog offense backed Munsch by putting up a run apiece in the first, third and fifth innings. Evan Bohman had a hand in each of those runs as part of his 3-for-4 game. Bohman drove in a run with an RBI single in the third. Teyt Johnson knocked in the first run with a sac fly. The final tally was scored by pinch runner Peyton Scott, who stole third and scored on an errant throw. Dylan DuRee then came on and struck out the side in the ninth and picked up his ninth save of the season.
The high powered Eagles (44-9) of Bartlesville, Okla., entered the opening round leading the nation in runs per game. They flashed plenty of firepower Monday night and chased Bulldog starting pitcher Sasha Jabusch before he could get through four innings. Paced by John Lantigua’s 4-for-6, two-double outing, Oklahoma Wesleyan rapped out 17 hits. It put up crooked numbers in the second, fourth, seventh and eighth innings.
Concordia’s offense battled against star Eagle pitcher Michael Anderson (12-1), who worked up a hefty pitch count in eight innings of work. Luciano DePamphilis tagged him for a solo homer and Beau Dorman kept the Bulldogs in it with a three-run smash in the top of the sixth. At that point, Concordia trailed 8-5 before Oklahoma Wesleyan pulled away. Johnson highlighted the Bulldog attack with a 4-for-4 night that included a ninth-inning RBI single.
Concordia did not commit an error on Monday in support of six different pitchers. Thomas Otte, Dresden Wilson and Adrian Cotton all appeared out of the bullpen versus the Eagles.
The season will be on the line when the Bulldogs meet up with either 14th-ranked Texas Wesleyan (No. 3 seed in the bracket) or Clarke (28-22) at 7 p.m. CT on Tuesday. The Rams (44-15) dropped a 3-1 decision to host and second-seeded Freed-Hardeman University (Tenn.) on Monday. Clarke and Texas Wesleyan will play the first game of the day in Henderson on Tuesday.
It will be a long wait before Concordia takes Carnes Field on day two in the Henderson Bracket. Says Dupic, “I kind of prefer (the wait). It was a long day today. It will be nice for everybody to get some rest, relax a little bit and enjoy the experience.”
May. 14, 2019
HENDERSON, Tenn. – Perhaps the greatest season in Concordia University baseball history came to an end late on Tuesday (May 14) evening in cool Tennessee air. There were hugs and teary eyes for a group that hoped to extend its stay in the Henderson Bracket at least one more day. Unfortunately, the Bulldogs failed to capitalize on plenty of run scoring chances and fell, 2-1, at the hands of 14th-ranked Texas Wesleyan University in an elimination game in the NAIA Baseball National Championship Opening Round.
This was the end of the line for 10 seniors, who helped head coach Ryan Dupic’s program to GPAC regular season titles and NAIA national tournament berths in both 2017 and 2019. The ’19 squad finished with an overall record of 33-20.
“It’s been a fun year. I can’t say I was prepared for this (to end),” Dupic said. “You start to think about the people and the environment that was created for everybody, which allowed the players to be themselves and us coaches to be ourselves. Sometimes in coaching I feel like you get stuck being the police all the time and you can’t let your hair down and just have fun. This team just did such an awesome job of balancing expectations and enjoying their experiences. It’s created an environment where we could all have fun.
“Obviously we’re sad we don’t have the opportunity to continue that. That’s always the challenge right away.”
With the season on the line, the pitching combo of Tanner Wauhob and Ryan Samuelson delivered by allowing just five hits to a potent Rams (46-15) offense that came into the day averaging nearly seven runs per game. In his final collegiate appearance, Wauhob covered 5.1 innings and surrendered two runs on five hits and three walks. When he ran into trouble in the sixth, Samuelson came to the rescue, quickly put the fire out and fired 3.2 innings of hitless, dominant relief.
While Tanner Amaral’s two-run single off of Wauhob provided Texas Wesleyan’s only tallies, Concordia waited until the bottom of the seventh to finally crack the scoreboard. That’s when Wade Council led off the frame with the 150th hit of his college career. He eventually came around to score on Teyt Johnson’s base hit to left. Council just did elude the tag on a close play at the plate.
Johnson’s hit finally ended a run of frustration with runners in scoring position. The Bulldogs had been 0-for-9 with runners in scoring position against Ram hurler Glad Houston prior to that at bat. Following Johnson’s RBI single, Houston buckled down and retired the final seven hitters to polish off a complete game. Houston scattered 10 hits and struck out nine Bulldogs while throwing 136 pitches.
The senior class featured the likes of seniors in second baseman Christian Meza and shortstop Logan Ryan, as well as closer Dylan DuRee. Meza concluded his career with program all-time rankings of first in doubles, second in hits (216), second in RBIs (141), third in games played (189), sixth in runs scored (115) and seventh in batting average (.340). Ryan has now played in more games (194) than any player in school history.
For those who are coming back, the game has changed. An unprecedented staff of pitchers will remain mostly intact, headed by current junior Jason Munsch, who fired a gem in Monday’s win over Clarke. The staff that shattered the school strikeout record led the way for a 23-5 record in conference games.
“I got a text from Drew Olson and he talked about creating that type of program where you expect to go to nationals every year and that’s the hope as we move forward,” Dupic said. “With those juniors having been through this a lot I hope they can see just how close we are. Bottom line is we have to go back to work and keep getting better.”
Concordia has gone 1-2 in both of its opening round appearances. The 2017 squad earned a win over Jamestown in national tournament action in Hutchinson, Kan.
May. 17, 2019
SEWARD, Neb. – In many ways, the 2019 Concordia University baseball has reset the standard for the program. The GPAC regular season champion Bulldogs broke numerous team records (see below), including a new record for conference wins in a season and longest win streak in school history. Naturally, many individuals made their way either to the very top of program all-time lists or put themselves inside the top 10.
Among the highlights, a pitching staff full of swing-and-miss arms shattered the previous program standard of 382 strikeouts in a single season by fanning 501 hitters. Jason Munsch became the school’s all-time strikeout king while 2019 Concordia pitchers posted three of the program’s six highest single-season strikeout totals ever. Offensively, Christian Meza rose to No. 1 all-time in doubles and finished his career in the top 10 of nine categories currently tracked on the career record book.
Now a two-time GPAC Coach of the Year, Ryan Dupic has presided over the winningest five years in program history. Over his five-year tenure, Dupic has guided Concordia to a combined record of 146-109 with two GPAC regular season titles, two GPAC postseason championship game appearances and two NAIA national tournament opening round trips.
Team records broken in 2019
Individual records broken in 2019
2019 Bulldogs on program top 10 lists
Evan Bohman, Junior
Keaton Candor, Sophomore
Wade Council, Junior
Jake Fosgett, Junior (Pitcher)
Jesse Garcia, Freshman
Sasha Jabusch, Junior (Pitcher)
Christian Meza, Senior
Jason Munsch, Junior (Pitcher)
Logan Ryan, Senior
Tanner Wauhob, Senior (Pitcher)
May. 29, 2019
SEWARD, Neb. – A group of six student-athletes from the GPAC regular season champion Concordia University baseball team have been named 2019 Daktronics-NAIA Scholar-Athletes, as announced by the NAIA on Wednesday (May 29). The list includes two-time Scholar-Athletes in Johnny May, Logan Ryan, Thomas Sautel and Tanner Wauhob. Wade Council and Keith Wolverton are first-time honorees.
In order to be nominated by an institution’s head coach or sports information director, a student-athlete must maintain a minimum grade point average of 3.5 on a 4.0 scale, must appear on the eligibility certificate for the sport and have attended two full years as a non-transfer or one full year as a transfer. A total of 439 baseball student-athletes across the nation were named 2019 Scholar-Athletes by the NAIA.
Concordia University ranks as the NAIA’s all-time leader in number of Daktronics-NAIA Scholar-Athletes with 1,477 and counting. Concordia ended the 2018-19 academic year with 117 Scholar-Athletes for a new school record. The Bulldogs have been a regular national leader for both scholar-athletes and scholar-teams and are coming off a 2017-18 academic year that resulted in 77 more scholar-athletes and 20 scholar-teams (third most in the nation). Also in 2017-18, seven Bulldog student-athletes garnered both CoSIDA Academic All-District and CoSIDA Academic All-America accolades.
Wade Council, Jr. | Colorado Springs, Colo. | Biology
Johnny May, Sr. | Johnston, Iowa | Criminal Justice (minor in Coaching)
Logan Ryan, Sr. | Johnston, Iowa | Secondary Education (minor in Business)
Thomas Sautel, Sr. | Littleton, Colo. | Business Administration
Tanner Wauhob, Sr. | Sioux City, Iowa | Exercise Science (minors in Sports Psychology/Biology)
Keith Wolverton, Sr. | Seward, Neb. | Agribusiness
May. 30, 2019
Entering the 2019 season, the previous five GPAC regular-season baseball championship trophies had been dispersed among five separate programs. In other words, it’s been a league without a true top dog. After winning the league title in 2017, the Concordia University baseball team dropped down to seventh place in 2018 as the topsy-turvy conference trend continued.
Who knows how the GPAC race will play out in 2020, but at least for now, the Bulldogs have earned the right to call themselves one of the league’s top programs. A 23-5 conference mark in 2019 brought another regular-season trophy to Seward and ensured that the departing seniors would leave a lasting, positive legacy.
Says 2019 GPAC Coach of the Year Ryan Dupic, “There was a piece of everybody who wanted to show it wasn’t just a one-year-wonder thing. Since I’ve been here it’s kind of been a different team (winning the conference) every year. For us to be able to stabilize and do that (win two of three titles) is very rewarding. That was the message we sent to the team. For those seniors that’s a legacy they have as players who helped solidify this program as a consistent competitor. You can talk about it, but until you do it you’re really not there.”
Those who have been members of the 2017 and 2019 championship teams (and NAIA national qualifiers) have aided in bringing Concordia baseball into its golden age. When Dupic arrived, he could not sell a history of past success to potential recruits. At one point in the 1990s, the Bulldogs dropped 111 games in a row against NAIA competition. Those days are long gone – and the 2019 squad helped reinforce that point.
Beginning in late March this past season, Dupic’s boys got on a roll like no other Concordia baseball team had ever experienced. To go a step further, only one GPAC squad had ever begun the conference season with a longer unbeaten streak. Following the lead of a dominant pitching staff and eventual GPAC Player of the Year Christian Meza, the Bulldogs blazed to a 15-0 league record for the longest win streak in school history. Each time it looked like the streak was about to end, someone new seemed to step up to keep it intact.
“I was really proud of our offense this year. It was a different guy each time,” Dupic said. “That speaks to being part of a team and it speaks to the way that guys support one another. We had a team of guys that stuck with things, didn’t get selfish, continued to support the team and make it about success as a whole. Our pitching staff was fantastic this year and justifiably got a lot of the credit, but our position players were a lot better this year than they were a year ago in terms of on-field performance.
“It’s a life lesson. It goes beyond individual awards. That moves into being able to understand how to work together. You’ll carry that with you forever.”
The life lessons might make the statistics seem a bit trivial, but they do help us explain how the 2019 team accomplished what it did. By season’s end, there was no longer any argument to be made. The ’19 pitching staff is the best in school history. The 2.31 ERA within conference play led the GPAC by a few country miles and the 501 overall strikeouts obliterated the former school single season record of 382 (set in 2018).
One opposing head coach even commented that Concordia had four aces in its rotation. Four of the five first team all-conference pitching spots went to Bulldogs – Dylan DuRee, Jake Fosgett, Sasha Jabusch and Jason Munsch. A lefty from Campbell, Calif., Munsch is now the program’s all-time strikeout king after a stellar 2019 campaign. He struck out 12 hitters in an eight-inning gem in a national tournament win over Clarke. Things came together probably better than Dupic had even imagined.
“I think the talent was there,” Dupic said. “A lot of those guys you saw be successful had either had a taste of it or had done it for a year, but had also mixed in some experience where they hadn’t been as good. I think they learned about themselves as people, learned in terms of the preparation it takes and learned the mindset and mentality you have to have on a consistent basis. You saw that with Jason. He was able to take it to another level. You saw the growth and maturation of many of our guys.”
The program record book is a reflection of what has taken place in recent years. Dupic says that some baseball alums who have reached out to him have expressed congratulatory messages – and have also joked that the current teams need to stop breaking their records. Middle infield mainstays Meza (doubles) and Logan Ryan (games played) set new career standards before graduating. Meza’s name is all over the program’s top 10 lists in key statistical categories.
More important than that, Meza has helped change a culture, the standard and the perception of what it means to be associated with Concordia baseball.
“I think people do understand that we’re a more competitive program now,” Dupic said. “Social media is obviously a pretty strong influencer right now, and I think people see it through that. It’s really cool having the alumni reach out and talk about how excited they are to see the program doing so well. It’s nice to connect with them and see their desire to be part of the program. Obviously we have some positive momentum.”
Now Dupic and his staff, which includes Bryce Berg, look forward to continuing to recruit and to the return of their guys in the fall. One of the strange sights will be a completely new middle infield. Fortunately, a nice core returns. That vaunted pitching staff should be solid again and the lineup will be anchored by the likes of Evan Bohman and Wade Council. Dupic says the focus currently is on getting some players healthy and the continuation of the right ways of thinking.
Says Dupic, “Every year represents a new challenge and I think the challenge of this team is just humility and staying with the process that made you successful. Then it’s about taking it to another level. It’s a lot easier to climb the mountain than it is to stay at the top of the mountain. The big challenge is to sustain the type of culture and chemistry that was created in ’17 and ’19. It’s a fun challenge to know how hard that’s going to be.”
Jun. 24, 2019
SEWARD, Neb. – Seven members of the GPAC regular-season champion Concordia University baseball team landed on the 2019 NAIA/NCAA Division II, III All-Nebraska Baseball Team, as announced by the Omaha World-Herald on Saturday (June 22). GPAC Player of the Year Christian Meza was joined on the All-Nebraska squad by Bulldog pitchers Dylan DuRee and Jason Munsch. Four Concordia players were chosen for honorable mention accolades: Wade Council, Jake Fosgett, Jesse Garcia and Sasha Jabusch.
Head coach Ryan Dupic’s club placed six players on the All-GPAC first team: Meza, Council, DuRee, Fosgett, Jabusch and Munsch.
Meza is the first ever Bulldog to be awarded the title of GPAC Player of the Year. By the time his career concluded, Meza owned school all-time rankings of first in doubles (53), second in hits (216), second in RBIs (141), sixth in runs scored (117) and seventh in batting average (.340). The San Diego native was a two-time first team All-GPAC choice and had three total all-conference honors in his career. This past spring, Meza hit .339 (60-for-177) with a .446 on-base percentage and .480 slugging percentage. He totaled 36 runs, 16 doubles, three home runs and 40 RBIs and produced a fielding percentage of .954.
DuRee, an Elkhorn, Neb., native, was lights out at the back end of the bullpen. In 30.2 innings of work this season, he allowed just two earned runs. DuRee recorded 36 strikeouts and held opposing hitters to just a .185 batting average. His nine saves rank as the second highest single season total in program history. DuRee made 18 appearances on the mound this season after making 10 as a junior.
Munsch is a two-time first team All-GPAC honoree. The lefty from Campbell, Calif., went 6-4 with a 2.44 ERA and 106 strikeouts in 66.1 innings (11 starts). He held opposing hitters to a .185 batting average. Munsch is the only pitcher in program history to eclipse 200 strikeouts for a career (currently at 222). In 29 career collegiate starts, Munsch owns a 3.23 ERA over 158.2 innings. He was named the GPAC Pitcher of the Week on April 16 after posting a career high 16 strikeouts in a win over Jamestown.
A mainstay at the top of the lineup, Council was the 2019 GPAC Gold Glove right fielder in addition to earning first team all-conference honors. He batted .303 (57-for-188) with 12 doubles, three triples, two home runs and 31 RBIs to go along with a .384 on-base percentage. As just a freshman, Garcia took well to the middle of the lineup. He hit .300 (45-for-150) with seven doubles, eight home runs, 36 RBIs, a .451 on-base percentage and .507 slugging percentage.
Fosgett and Jabusch were two more major contributors to the GPAC’s top pitching staff. Fosgett threw like an ace, going 6-2 with a 3.09 ERA and 85 strikeouts over 55.1 innings (nine starts). The native of Carlsbad, Calif., fanned a career high 11 hitters on four different occasions. Jabusch has made a significant impact in his first season at Concordia after he transferred from Clark College (Wash.). The native of Kelso, Wash., was on the mound when the Bulldogs clinched the GPAC regular season title on April 27. He notched 17 strikeouts in that performance. On the season, Jabusch went 6-3 with a 4.09 ERA and 79 strikeouts in 61.2 innings (11 starts).
Named GPAC Coach of the Year, Dupic guided his 2019 team to a 33-20 overall mark and a berth in the NAIA Baseball National Championship Opening Round, in addition to the GPAC title.
P: Stephen Knapp, Bellevue, sr. 10-3, 2.67 ERA, 8 CG, 5 shutouts
P: Matt Lindsley, York, sr. 12-2, 3.10 ERA, 104 Ks, 3 CG
P: Jason Munsch, Concordia, jr. 6-4, 2.44 ERA, 5 CG, 106 Ks in 66⅓ innings
P: Ryan Obrecht, Wayne State, fr. 7-2, 2.04 ERA, 50 Ks, no HRs allowed
P: Dylan DuRee, Concordia, sr. 18 appearances, 9 saves, 0.59 ERA
C: Travis Tanaka, Bellevue, sr. .370, 56 RBIs, 14 2B, 35 runs
1B: Riley Baasch, Bellevue, jr. .342, 11 HR, 60 RBIs, 18 2B, 56 runs
2B: Christian Meza, Concordia, sr. .339, 16 2B, 40 RBIs, 36 runs
SS: Kory Longaker, Bellevue, sr. .376, 12 HR, 29 2B, 58 RBIs, 83 runs, 19 SB
* 3B: JT Patterson, Bellevue, sr. .367, 24 HR, 91 RBIs, 72 runs
OF: Lawyer Braun, York, sr. .372, 13 HR, 43 RBIs, 43 runs, 15 SB
OF: Tommy Hansen, Bellevue, jr. .328, 6 HR, 39 RBIs, 12 SB
OF: Alex Logelin, Wayne State, so. .317, 21 2B, 53 runs, 6 HR, 29 RBIs
DP: Eduardo Yanez, Doane, sr. .287, 15 2B, 10 HR, 41 RBIs
U: Kyle Thompson, Wayne State, sr. .343, 8 HR, 44 RBIs
* — honorary captain
Honorable mention — Bellevue: Austin Alexander, Cody Banks, Stuart Eurich, Jarrett Poh. Concordia: Wade Council, Jake Fosgett, Jesse Garcia, Sasha Jabusch. Doane: Aaron Mason, Lukas White. Hastings: Camden Brichacek, Dylan Fitzgerald. Midland: Matt Abdelnour, Austin Hamilton, James Scurto. Nebraska Wesleyan: Derek Kolbush, Josh Seifert. Peru State: Adam Cendejas, Darren Hasch, Alberto Rosario, Sterling Rupp, Eddy Tavarez. Wayne State: Bryce Bisenius, Andrew Hanson, Charles Hasty, Brendan Madsen, Hunter Wienhoff. York: Luke Jackson, Spencer Jones, Ethan Lanz, Matt Nunes.