Ruston, La. - The Nebraska
baseball team (5-9, 0-0 Big Ten) split a doubleheader with the Louisiana Tech
Bulldogs on Saturday afternoon, as the Huskers picked up their first road win
of the season with a 3-2 win in the series finale. A strong outing from NU
starter Brandon Pierce, along with a three-run sixth inning helped the Huskers
avoid a three-game sweep by the Bulldogs.
delivered his best start of the season in the win to improve to 1-2 on the year,
as the righty gave the Huskers a season-high 6.0 innings. Pierce tied a career
high with six strikeouts, while giving up one run on four hits and no walks.
The junior from Gunter, Texas, retired the Bulldogs in order three times on the
afternoon and never faced more than four batters in an inning.
Huskers received nearly all of its production out of their first five hitters
in the lineup, including a 2-for-4 day from Austin Darby and two RBIs from Josh
putting just two runners on base through the first five innings, including one
hit, the Husker bats broke through with three runs on four hits in the top of
the sixth inning. Wes Edrington led off with walk, stole second and moved to
third on a bunt single by Michael Pritchard. Darby followed with a single that
scored Edrington, giving Nebraska a 1-0 lead, its first lead of the weekend.
Chad Christensen then dropped down a sacrifice bunt to move Pritchard and Darby
into scoring position, and nearly beat the throw to load the bases. With one
down, Scheffert blasted a double into the left-field gap to give the Huskers a
3-0 lead. Pat Kelly followed with a bloop single to right, before La Tech
retried the next two Husker hitters to end the frame.
Bulldogs were able to cut Nebraska's lead to one, 3-2, in the seventh with a
pair of runs on three hits. After Pierce gave up a leadoff single to Jacob
Derouen, Caleb Hawkins came in and produced a strikeout before giving up a
single to Bre'Shon Kimbell. With runners on the corners, Ryan Gebhardt came
through with a pinch-hit sacrifice fly to score Derouren. Corey White then
blasted a double into the left field corner to score Kimbell. With the tying
run in scoring position, Head Coach Darin Erstad brought in Josh Roeder, who
retired pinch-hitter Austin Hedges with one pitch to end the inning.
came back and had a pair of runners in scoring position with two outs in the
eighth, but reliever Dakota Doss struck out Kash Kalkowski to stop Nebraska
from adding any insurance. Roeder came back to the mound in the bottom of the
eighth and sent the Bulldogs down in order, preserving Nebraska's 3-2 lead
heading into the ninth.
Vogt closed the door with a perfect ninth inning, as he retired La Tech's 4-5-6
hitters in order to earn his third save of the season.
Huskers will be back on the road next weekend when they open a three-game
series in California with the UC Irvine Anteaters. Following a three-game set
in Irvine, the Huskers will stay in the Los Angeles area and play a pair of
games at Cal State Fullerton on Tuesday, March 19 and Wednesday March 20. From
California, the Huskers head straight to Champaign, Ill., for their Big Ten opener
with the Illinois Fighting Illini on Friday, March 22.