BSU splits two-game set with Southwest Minnesota State
Monday, April 28, 2008
Minnetonka, Minn. (Veterans Field) -- The Bemidji State baseball team split a Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference double-header with the Southwest Minnesota State Mustangs Monday afternoon at Veterans Field in Minnetonka, Minn. The Beaver bats were stifled in Game 1 as SMSU’s Adam Schrader scattered five Beaver hits to pick a 3-1 decision. In Game 2 the Beavers got a three-RBI game from third baseman Colton Smith (Fr., Waddell, Ariz.) to lift BSU to a 4-3 win in the nightcap.

Southwest Minnesota State jumped out to an early 2-0 lead through one inning of play in Game 1. The Mustangs second batter of the game, Josh Nolan, hit his fifth home run of the season to get things started for the Mustangs. Jake Munsch pushed the Mustangs lead to two as he produced a two-out RBI single to left field to give SMSU the two run advantage after one inning of play.

The Beavers were held to just one hit through the first four innings of play with just two base runners. BSU mounted a threat in the fifth when Josh Juntunen (Jr., Elk River, Minn.) picked up his second hit of the game to lead the inning off. Juntunen advanced to second when Mike Wagner (Sr., Plymouth, N.H.) was hit by a pitch. Nick Jelacie (Fr., Brainerd, Minn.) loaded the bases with a single to left field allowing both Juntunen and Wagner to move up a base. The Beavers left the bases loaded as Schrader shut the door on the rally by sitting down the next two batters to get out of the jam.

SMSU pushed its lead to 3-0 in the bottom of the fifth as they loaded the bases with one out. Andrew Kinney drove in his team leading 33 RBI with a single to right field but that was all the Mustangs would be able to plate in the inning.

The Beavers lone run came in the seventh inning off the bat of Tony Samuelson (Sr., Pine City, Minn.). In a pinch hit appearance Samuelson hit his first home run of the season to right field to break up the shut out, but that was all the scoring BSU would get and the Beavers fell 3-1 in Game 1.

Kevin Morel (Jr., Shoreview, Minn.) fell to 2-5 on the season as he worked 5.2 innings allowing three runs (three earned) off eight hits with three strikeouts and three walks. Randy Amos (Jr., Wilmington, N.C.) worked a third of an inning in the loss.

Adam Schrader picked up his third win of the season working 6.2 innings allowing one run (one earned) off five hits with seven strikeouts and three walks. Brandon Wilhelmi picked up his fourth save of the season working just a third of an inning.

Juntunen led the Beavers at the plate going 2-for-2.

Game 2 saw the Mustangs jump out to a 2-0 lead at the end of one inning of play once again. With two outs in the inning the Mustangs strung together three straight singles driving in two runs. Andrew Kinney drove in the first run for SMSU while Jake Munsch platted the second run for the Mustangs with a RBI single to left field.

The Beavers took advantage of an error by Southwest Minnesota State Mustang shortstop Lex Reinke to close the lead to one run in the third inning, 2-1. Shaun Corbett (Sr., Mora, Minn.) led the inning off by reaching on the error and advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt by J.J. Swalbowski (Jr., Grand Rapids, Minn.). Corbett would come around to score off Rich Bohannan’s (Sr., Goodyear, Ariz.) two-out RBI single to center field, Bohannan’s fifteenth RBI of the season.

The Beavers grabbed a 4-2 lead with a three-run fifth. Freshman Colton Smith provided the lift for the Beavers as he laced a three-RBI home run over the left field wall to give BSU its first lead of the day, a lead the Beavers would not relinquish. The home run was Smith’s first of the season and first of his career.

SMSU closed the Beaver lead to one in the sixth as Lex Reinke led the inning off with his third home run of the season to bring the Mustangs to within 4-3. That was as close as the Mustangs got as BSU relief pitcher Ryan Bohannan (Jr., Goodyear, Ariz.) sent SMSU down in order in the seventh helping BSU secure the 4-3 win.

Both teams had strong performances from their starting pitchers. Casey Allar (Jr., Sartell, Minn.) picked up his third straight win improving to 3-2 on the season working five innings allowing two runs (two earned) with four strikeouts and three walks. Bohannan picked up his second save of the season allowing one run (one earned) with two strikeouts.

Jared Pick surrendered his first loss of the season falling to 4-1 in a complete game performance. Pick allowed four runs (three earned) off six hits with two strikeouts and one walk.

Huether and Smith each went 2-for-3 in the contest, accounting for four of BSU’s six hits.

With the split the Beavers improve to 13-20-1 overall and 11-9 in the NSIC. The Beavers 4-3 win is the first win over the Mustangs since April 3, 2006 when BSU upended SMSU, 9-1. The Mustangs lead the all-time series 72-30.

The Beavers eleven conference wins is the most since 2004 when BSU finished the conference season 11-17.

The Beavers are back in action Wednesday, April 30 with a NSIC twinbill versus the University of Mary at the BSU Baseball Field. First pitch is set for 1 p.m. Central time.

Bemidji State University, located in Bemidji, Minn., is an NCAA Division II institution and a member of the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference (NSIC).