Bemidji State splits double-header with Concordia-St. Paul, 1-0 and 5-7
Friday, May 2, 2003
May 2, 2003
Beavers become just seventh team in school history to win 10 conference games

BEMIDJI, Minn. - [game 1 box][game 2 box] The 2003 Bemidji State baseball team became just the seventh in school history to win 10 conference games in a single season, riding a career pitching effort from freshman Scott Pugliese to win a 1-0 pitcher’s duel in Game 1 of a double-header with the Concordia-St. Paul Golden Bears. But a seventh-inning rally fell short in Game 2 as the Bears held on to earn the split, 7-5.

BSU’s Game 1 win was its 10th Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference victory of the season and marking just the seventh time in school history the Beavers have won 10 or more conference games. The team also became the first at BSU to play 40 games in a season since 1999 and has played just the ninth 40-game season in school history.

GAME 1: Freshman pitcher Scott Pugliese threw the best game of his young career, out-duelling Concordia’s Bill Mauer in a 1-0 Bemidji State victory which took just 1:24 to complete.

Pugliese, who came into the contest with a 1-7 record, allowed just three hits in six innings while striking out six and walking none. Pugliese hit Matt Borman with his first pitch of the contest, and in total the first three Golden Bears of the game reached base, but after Travis Anderson reached on a fielder’s choice to erase Borman Pugliese retired 10 consecutive batters. After Anderson’s fielder’s choice, Pugliese allowed just two baserunners the rest of the contest - Jared Johnson on a two-out single in the fourth and a leadoff single to David Schlundt in the sixth. Johnson never left first base, and Schlundt advanced only as far as second.

Brian Beuning pitched a one-two-three seventh with two strikeouts to earn his fifth save of the season.
Pugliese’s gem overshadowed an equally strong effort by Concordia starter Bill Mauer. Mauer threw a complete-game three-hitter, allowing just one unearned run, striking out four and walking one.

BSU picked up its only run in the third. Isaac Smieja led off the frame with a single to center, and after being singled to second by Beuning and advancing to third on a passed ball came around to score when Concordia second baseman Galen Wetzel booted a ground ball off the bat of Shaun Ross.

Pugliese’s win improved him to 2-7 on the season. Mauer took the loss and fell to 5-2.

GAME 2: Concordia jumped out to a 7-2 lead, then fought off a fierce BSU rally in the bottom of the seventh inning to secure a 7-5 victory and a split of today’s double-header.

The Golden Bears scored the game’s first run, plating Steve Butler unearned in the second inning after he had reached on a throwing error by BSU first baseman Isaac Smieja.

But the Beavers rallied and took the lead with two runs in the third. Charlie Plumadore walked to lead off the inning and Smieja followed him with a single. Beuning plated Plumadore with a single to center but was thrown out trying to stretch it to a double, 8-3-6; and Brad Johnson scored Smieja with a single to right to give the Beavers a 2-1 advantage.

But from there, the Bears would slowly pull away. Concordia picked up four runs in the fourth, when it cranked two three-run home runs in a span of just three batters off BSU starter Tyler Norland to grab a 5-2 lead. The Bears added insurance runs in the sixth and seventh, with the seventh-inning run coming via the team’s third home run of the day - a solo shot by Steve Butler.

But Bemidji State put together a valiant rally in the bottom of the seventh. Pinch-hitter Jeremy Mellen led off with a walk, and after a fielding error put Beuning on base a wild pitch left the duo at second and third with none out. Johnson walked to load the bases, and John Czech responded with a bases-clearing, three-RBI double to left to pull BSU within two runs, 7-5, with a man in scoring position and one out.

Dan Marshall followed Czech to the plate; Marshall was on as a pinch hitter for Mike Carlson, who had come on as a pinch runner for BSU’s leading hitter, Tony Klaers, in the sixth. Marshall struck out looking for the second out, but John Grindeland kept the rally alive with a single through the left side. But Chris Dvorak flew out to right to end the rally and allow Concordia to escape with the 7-5 win.

Tyler Norland took the loss for BSU, seeing his season record even at 3-3. Russell Berner pitched 3.2 innings in relief. Andrew Wehr picked up the win for Concordia, improving to 6-0 despite allowing five runs on 11 hits. Matt Borman recorded the final out to earn his second save.

Bemidji State moved to 14-26 on the season after the split, 10-10 in the NSIC, while Concordia-St. Paul moves to 20-8, 13-4 against the loop. The teams wrap their series, and BSU closes its 2003 baseball campaign, with a noon double-header tomorrow at the BSU Baseball Field.