Huskers Edged by Gophers in Rubber Match
Minneapolis, Minn. – For the second time in three days, Nebraska (13-9, 4-2 Big Ten) lost on a walk-off to Minnesota, this time on a wild pitch in the ninth inning during the second game of a doubleheader at Siebert Field on Sunday evening. The Gophers won by a 3-2 decision after NU took the first game of the doubleheader by a 10-1 margin.
Senior right-handed pitcher Reece Eddins, making his fourth start of the season, threw a career-high 7.0 innings and set a career high with seven strikeouts. He allowed two runs on seven hits and only walked one Gopher. Shay Schanaman went 1.1 innings and recorded two strikeouts.
Nebraska scored two runs in the top of the first to take the early lead. Aaron Palensky reached on an error with two outs before Gunner Hellstrom singled. Luke Roskam drove in both runners with a double. In the bottom of the first, each of the first two Gopher hitters singled en route to two runs and tied the game at 2-2.
In the top of the second, NU managed a leadoff walk, but a pickoff, strikeout and groundout ended a scoreless frame. The Gophers also drew a leadoff walk in the second, but a strikeout and double play kept them from scoring.
Palensky blistered a two-out double in the third, but was left on base after an inning-ending strikeout. Minnesota managed a single in the bottom half, but a flyout and double play ended the inning.
In the top of the fourth, Roskam drew a leadoff walk, but two strikeouts and a fielder’s choice kept NU from taking the lead. Minnesota got two runners on in the fourth inning on a pair of singles, but Eddins recorded two strikeouts before a flyout to center field.
Acker singled in the fifth and stole second, but NU left him stranded as the score remained 2-2. The Gophers went down in order in the bottom of the fifth.
NU left two runners on in the top of the sixth. Roskam hit a one-out single before Cam Chick drew a walk. But a flyout and strikeout ended Nebraska’s chance to score. In the bottom of the sixth, Eddins struck out the leadoff hitter before giving up a single. But Chick caught a line drive and threw it to first for a double play.
Both teams went down in order in the seventh inning.
Palensky drew a leadoff walk in the eighth, but a double play and groundout ended the inning. Minnesota went down 1-2-3 in the bottom of the eighth.
In the top of the ninth, Altavilla smacked a one-out single and advanced to second on a wild pitch. After a strikeout, pinch hitter Alex Henwood walked. NU had runners on second and third before a strikeout ended its chance to take the lead.
Minnesota loaded the bases on two walks and a passed ball in the bottom of the ninth. Schanaman struck out pinch hitter Cole McDevitt, but it was a wild pitch that allowed the winning run to score.
The Huskers travel to Manhattan, Kan., on Tuesday to face Kansas State at 6 p.m. (CT).