Eckman creates fireworks with walk-off home run in extras versus UMC

April 11, 20171234567RHE
Minnesota Crookston0020001370
Bemidji State1000000161
Win: Butcher (4-1) 5.051113
Loss: McNallan (2-3) 7.073128
Stewart (UMC) 423000
Boser (BSU) 412000
April 11, 201712345678910111213RHE
Minnesota Crookston01402000000007131
Bemidji State00010051000029173
Win: Riedel (2-2) 5.020008
Loss: Hanson (2-2) 2.232203
Hjelle (UMC) 623100
Boser (BSU) 613100
Miller (BSU) 713200
Olszewski (BSU) 613101
Eckman creates fireworks with walk-off home run in extras versus UMC
Tuesday, April 11, 2017
Eckman creates fireworks with walk-off home run in extras versus UMC

BEMIDJI, Minn. (BSU Baseball Field) -- Senior Collin Eckman put up his biggest hit of the Bemidji State University baseball season Tuesday night against University of Minnesota Crookston with a two-run walk-off home run in the bottom of the 13th inning to seal a split at BSU Baseball Field in Bemidji, Minn. Eckman’s second dinger of the season earned BSU (11-19, 8-10 Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference) a 9-7 win after falling in game one to UMC (15-19, 9-13 NSIC), 3-1.

Game One
Senior Ben Boser and junior Kai Haake led off game one with back-to-back doubles to put BSU on the board first, 1-0. Minnesota Crookston scored the final three runs of the game, two unearned in the third and one off an RBI double in the seventh. Bemidji State left six runners stranded on base without a runner reaching third after the first inning.

Beavers starting pitcher Connor McNallan (2-3) threw a complete game with a career-high eight strikeouts and one earned run allowed in the loss. Golden Eagles starting pitcher Jacob Butcher (4-1) earned the win after throwing 5.0 innings with five hits and one run allowed while Zach Seipel (7) recorded the save with 2.0 innings pitched and three strikeouts.

Game Two
Minnesota Crookston led off the second inning of game two with back-to-back singles to set up an RBI single up the middle and a 1-0 lead. The Golden Eagles used a walk, three singles and two BSU errors to score four runs in the third inning and go up, 5-0. Junior Scott Litchy recorded his first hit of the day, a double down the right field line, in the bottom of the fourth to set up the Beavers’ first run. Senior Duane Miller put the ball in play to draw an error and bring Litchy home to cut the UMC lead to 5-1.

After UMC added two runs in the fifth, sophomore Gunner Olszewski led off the seventh with a solo home run to right field to set up a five-run inning for BSU. Senior Ryan Rumpca drove in his 12th RBI of the season on a double to left center field while Litchy brought Rumpca home with an RBI triple to right field. Miller followed after a BSU runner was put on by a hit by pitch with his first hit of the day, a two-RBI double to left center, to cut UMC’s lead to 7-6.

Boser singled to left field in the eighth inning for an RBI after a single by senior Mason Bellew and double by Olszewski to tie the game at seven runs apiece. BSU missed an opportunity to take the lead with a runner on third and one out but was able to extend the game to extra innings. Neither team scored until the 13th frame when Miller reached on a two-out single and Eckman sent out his second and most impactful home run of the season to seal the split.

Senior outfielder/pitcher Logan Riedel (2-2) earned his second win of the season in relief while going 5.0 innings and tying his career high of eight strikeouts. Riedel allowed two hits and no runs against 15 batters faced. Senior pitcher Terry Hadden made an appearance in relief for 4.1 innings and also tied a career-high eight strikeouts. UMC pitcher Parker Hanson (2-2) took the loss after going 2.2 innings and allowing the walk-off two-run home run to Eckman in the 13th.

Bemidji State heads on the road for the first time since March 27 with a trip to face Wayne State College April 14-15. The Beavers and Wildcats play a four-game series Friday and Saturday with first pitch set at 12 p.m. for both days from Wayne, Neb.

Nestled in Northern Minnesota’s wooded region and located on the shore of Lake Bemidji, Bemidji State University sponsors 15 varsity athletic programs with NCAA Division I men’s and women’s hockey membership in the Western Collegiate Hockey Association, while its 13 NCAA Division II programs hold membership in the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference (NSIC).